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:
- "the consignment" (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 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)
- "consignment " (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)
- "a diplomat " ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist 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 (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: MR DAVID MORRIS <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 1 Dec 2021 11:56:34 +0100
I am Mr. David Morris, Head Officer-in-Charge, Administrative Service
Inspection Unit United Nations Inspection Agency in Hartsfield-Jackson
International Airport Atlanta, Georgia. During our investigation, I
discovered an abandoned shipment through a Diplomat from the United Kingdom
which was transferred from JF Kennedy Airport to our facility here in
Atlanta, and when scanned it revealed an undisclosed sum of money in 2
Metal Trunk Boxes weighing approximately 110kg each.
The consignment was abandoned because the Content was not properly declared
by the consignee as money rather it was declared as personal
effect/classified document to either avoid diversion by the Shipping Agent
or confiscation by the relevant authorities. The diplomat's inability to
pay for Non Inspection fees among other things are the reason why the
consignment is delayed and abandoned.
By my assessment, each of the boxes contains about $4M or more. They are
still left in the airport storage facility till today. The Consignments
like I said, are two metal trunk boxes weighing about 110kg each (Internal
dimension: W61 x H156 x D73 (cm) effective capacity: 680 L) Approximately.
The details of the consignment including your name and email on the
official document from the United Nations' office in London where the
shipment was tagged as personal effects/classified document is still
available with us. As it stands now, you have to reconfirm your full name,
Phone Number, and full address so I can cross-check and see if it
corresponds with the one on the official documents. It is now left to you
to decide if you still need the consignment or allow us to repatriate it
back to the UK(place of origin) as we were instructed.
As I did say again, the shipper abandoned it and ran away most importantly
because he gave a false declaration, he could not pay for the yellow tag,
he could not secure a valid non inspection document(s), etc. I am ready to
assist you in any way I can for you to get back these packages provided you
will also give me something out of it (financial gratification). You can
either come in person, or you engage the services of a secure
shipping/delivery Company/agent that will provide the necessary security
that is required to deliver the package to your doorstep or the
destination of your choice. I need all the guarantees that I can get from
you before I can get involved in this project.
Mr. David Morris