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:
- "i want to solicit your attention" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "trunk box" (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)
- "trunk boxes" (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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Sgt Emily Sweeney" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 28 Sep 2021 13:51:56 -0700
Subject: I will explain further when i get a response from you!!!
I am sorry to encroach into your privacy in this manner, I want to solicit your attention to assist me receive two (2) trunk boxes on my behalf.
I am an Army officer with the USA Military and currently in Baghdad with the Combat Support Squad, US Base Camp, Speicher - Baghdad, Iraq. I am on my 3rd deployment to combat war zones. I am also among the squad that will be re-deployed to Afghanistan in about a fortnight and in view of this, I
urgently need your help in assisting me receive for safe keeping the two (2) trunk boxes containing some monies.
You can visit this links for more details:
If you can be trusted, I will explain further on the modalities on how we'll realize the safe shipment of the boxes to you for safe keeping without the breach of the law.when i get a response from you.
God Bless America.
Sgt Emily Sweeney