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:
- "cashier's check" (Beware of any scheme that involves cashing checks or money orders and then wiring a portion of the funds somewhere - you'll be liable for the entire amount if the checks or money orders turn out to be fake, even after you have received and forwarded cash. If it's a lottery prize, remember that real lotteries do not pay large prizes by check. They wire the money directly to your bank account and you do not pay for that. Many scammers promise a large check only in order to then demand payment of courier fees for a fake courier service. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Tammy Webster" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 10 Oct 2022 06:52:44 -0700
Subject: Re: From Tammy W
I Tammy Webster and my husband Cliff Webster won $ 316.3 million in the Powerball jackpot and we decided to help those in need. We decided to donate a total of $ 100 million to help those affected in one way or another. Due to the crisis and the pandemic in Europe, we decided to donate $ 3 million each to 33 lucky people in our charity project.
To check out our lottery winnings, check out my interview below:
After the computer spin, your name and email address were among the 33 random emails Google, Inc. gave me. posted as a web user; To allow you to send this gift, please send me the details below.
Once I receive this information, I will leave a cashier's check in your name and have the bank process the funds transfer for you. If accepted, send me the required information or otherwise ignore it