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:
- "courier company" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs.Jenna Goudreau" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 15 Jan 2022 09:12:14 +0100
Subject: YOUR ATM CARD IS HERE
I just received a called from the Director of DHL Courier Company
California that your ATM CARD was sent to you last weeks ago was
returned due to wrong address,Your ATM CARD worth $25.7 Millions
Dollars confirmed to be your over due inheritance contractual
Therefore Contact the director (MR.JOHNSON CHRIS) and give him your
correct address and Phone number.Use this code (XA-8550) as the
subject of your mail to them for identification. Please try to contact
them now so that them can proceed with Delivery of your ATM CARD today
MR.JOHNSON CHRIS,DIRECTOR,DHL FOREIGN DELIVERY SECTION DHL EXPRESS
COURIER COMPANY CALIFORNIA , Director email
1.YOUR FULL NAME_____
2.YOUR HOME ADDRESS______
3.YOUR PHONE AND CELL NUMBER____
4.A COPY OF YOUR PICTURE____
7. YOUR CITY_____