fighting spam and scams on the Internet
"419" Scam – Advance Fee / Fake Lottery Scam
The so-called "419" scam is a type of fraud dominated by criminals from Nigeria and other countries in Africa. Victims of the scam are promised a large amount of money, such as a lottery prize, inheritance, money sitting in some bank account, etc.
Victims never receive this non-existent fortune but are tricked into sending their money to the criminals, who remain anonymous. They hide their real identity and location by using fake names and fake postal addresses as well as communicating via anonymous free email accounts and mobile phones.
Keep in mind that scammers DO NOT use their real names when defrauding people.
The criminals either abuse names of real people or companies or invent names or addresses.
Any real people or companies mentioned below have NO CONNECTION to the scammers!
Read more about such scams here or in our 419 FAQ. Use the Scam-O-Matic to verify suspect emails.
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Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:
- This email uses a separate reply address that is different from the sender address. Spammers use this to get replies even when the original spam sending accounts have been shut down. Also, sometimes the sender addresses are legitimate looking but fake and only the reply address is actually an email account controlled by the scammers.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "money laundering" ("anti-terrorist", "anti-money laundering" or "drug-free" certificates are a common way for criminals in fake lottery scams and other Advance Fee scams to get you to send money to them. There are no such certificates in the real banking world. )
- "million united state dollars" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
Fraud email example:
Date: Mon, 27 Sep 2021 04:43:10 -0700
Subject: my subject
I was contacted by the IMF Department USA to contact you consigning the funds released from the World Bank president (Mr David Malpass). The Initial Funds released from the HSBC BANK Washington, DC, United States was $1.92billion to settle charges of money laundering as published on this site (http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2012/12/10/hsbc-said-to-near-1-9-billion-settlement-over-money-laundering/).But the HSBC BANK has chosen a capable affiliate bank to handle this transaction and your share out of the money being released from the HSBC BANK came out to be $5million United state dollars.
The IMF DEPARTMENT contacted us on Friday because we are the international bank here in the Nigeria also in USA that deals with foreign currency as the IMF cannot communicate with you directly as they work with banks directly not individuals. So I am contacting you on behalf of the IMF DEPARTMENT here in NIGERIA and also HSBC BANK Washington, DC, United States, to inform you that our bank will be the paying bank of your funds and you will have to open a temporary account with us to make the release of your funds more easier.
This is how it will work, after setting up the account with us, you will have a direct login username and password/ pin to access your account, we will release your funds into your account here in Keystone Bank then you can transfer by yourself to any bank of your choice. Note you can write to me through my email or call me for more verification Tel:(+234)-903-221-5129
Thanks and I will be waiting to hear from you.
Mr. Olaniran Olayinka
MD/CEO of Keystone Bank