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:
- "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.
Fraud email example:
From: Abdul Uzum <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 29 Dec 2021 22:02:05 -1200
Subject: Please i need your urgent response
Please i need your urgent response
Let me start by introducing myself, I am Mr. Abdul Uzun, Director of
Bank Of Africa Burkina Faso.
I would like to bring to your personal edification. (US $ 18.5
million) and I will also give you all the details about the funds as
soon as I hear from you soon.
This is a legitimate transaction and I will offer you 40% of this
money as a foreign partner after confirming the funds in your bank
account. If you are interested, please get back to me with the
following details below.
(1) Your age â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦
(2) Your profession: â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦
(3) Your marital status: â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦
(4) Your full residential address: â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦
(5) Your private telephone and fax number and your full name â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦â¦
As soon as I receive this data, I will send you the application form
which you will send to the bank and I will give you the full direction
immediately I hear from you soon,
Mr. Abdul Uzun