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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- 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 (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: MR ISMAEL HAZAL <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 16 Oct 2021 12:27:59 +0100
Subject: ATTENTION PLEASE
Attention: Dear Friend,
I wish to introduce you to this highly prospective crude oil sale and
Refining venture. In this project, we will register you with the
local Corporate Affairs Commission.
Re-assign an already allocated crude oil & Petroleum products sale
license to you as representative of the Petroleum Agency in selling of
crude oil & Petroleum products to the end buyers.
In the end of year and seasonal review, some of the companies, could
their dreams in the project as a result of incapability. So their
licenses have been frozen and declared vacant.
I will package you as the crude oil & Petroleum products sale partner
Beneficiary. We would re-assign the license earlier given to a failed
company to yours. This will give you the legal authority to act as
crude oil & Petroleum products sales agent/representative.
The assignment of the license gives you the privilege to operate as
first lifters of crude oil & Petroleum products from the block. This
attracts US$2.00 discount per barrel to the lifter on crude oil. The
US$2.00 is our (lifter) discount commission entitlement from the local
petroleum agency. Also being able to get final buyers entitles you to
a US$1.00 discount, from the discount given to the end buyer as
"mandates". As you are going to be Lifting 2 million barrels per month
from the block.
The US$2.00 discount from local petroleum agency sums up to US$4
million per month for a 2million barrels per lift. And US$1.00
discount from the end buyer comes to US$2 million per month. Other
petroleum products attracts USD $ 0.50 on each case as above.
This totals to US$6 million gross commission discount coming to you
per transaction each month from crude oil sales. What is so
interesting about the project is that your presence is not
compulsorily needed, after the registration of your company
partnership and obtaining the sales license. There are always buyers
who have no license and are ready to buy from those whose allocation
for immediate sales. This is if you are not willing or capable to meet
the financial involvement or maybe you do not have ready buyer from
We will gladly appreciate your keen interest to be part of this
venture. Get back to me urgently STRICTLY via my official email
MR ISMAEL HAZAL
W.Licencing & Proccurement Department
WAOPMA Crude Oil & Petroleum Product Marketing.