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:
- "atm card department" (this phrase is often used in the ATM card payment scam)
- "million us 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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: ATMUNIT SERVICE <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 25 Nov 2021 16:43:33 +0100
Subject: YOUR ATM CARD
YOUR ATM CARD
This is to Inform you that an ATM Card worth $5.5 Million US Dollars has
been accredited by the Federal Government of Nigeria as Fund Compensation
currently approved in your favor. You are receiving this email message as a
result of the FBI working closely with the Federal Government of Nigeria
and also the World Bank in order to fully compensate victims that have had
problems in receiving their funds or lost funds in the process.Your name is
among the list of beneficiaries
for the above payment which was just recently approved in your favor.
pleases send your information bellow for the delivery of your ATM Card.
Your full Nameâ¦â¦â¦â¦..
Thanks for your understanding.
Mr. Ladi Balogun
Head; Director,Foreign Operations
Atm Card Department,