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:
- ",500,000" (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)
- "00,000.00" (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)
- "contact me immediately" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists free webmail addresses. Use of such addresses is typical for scams. Lotteries, banks and any but the smallest of companies do not normally use such addresses. Criminals use them to anonymously send and receive email at Internet cafes.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (AOL; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "Nelson Clark" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 28 Sep 2021 03:23:21 -0700
Subject: Abandoned Inter-Bank Wire Deposit on your name.
Mr. Nelson Clark
JP Morgan Chase Bank
270 Park Ave 31st Floor
New York, NY 10017, USA
Telephone: +1 (917) 983-0024
Greetings to you,
I am divulging this vital information to you which entails an investment amount abandoned with our bank
which is valued at US$5,500,000.00 million.
The inter-bank wire deposit slip states your last name as the final beneficiary that is why I have contacted
you so we can re-direct the fund to your bank account and youll give me 30%.
The management of the JPMorgan Chase is undergoing a process of confiscation of unclaimed, unfiltered,
incomplete and suspected deposits emanating and originating from various African banks.
Your name with file no: JPMC-WSAF-XX01593 is on the list submitted. It is my designate, legal and official
duty for final assessment before confiscation is carried out.
Presently, I am in London for a Five (5) days valuation process and external auditing. If youre still willing
to squash the confiscation and thereby receive the US$5,500,000.00, contact me immediately.
Private Email: email@example.com