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:
- "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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: United Nation Humanitarian Aid <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 11 Oct 2022 04:56:25 -0700
Subject: This is Micheal Williams from United Nations Humanitarian Aid.
This is Micheal Williams from United Nations Humanitarian Aid.
I am contacting you In regard of a Ukrainian name KrystIyan Dmytro who came
to our office to seek for help about his late father Inheritance one
consignment metallic trunk Box that was deposited In Piraeus security
Financial Vaults Service by his late father Mr Borysko Dmytro.
who was killed along with his mother and of his sister and one Injured with
serious pain In the hospital all by the Russian soldiers.
At the moment I am seeking for your assistance to help stand as the
beneficiary of the little boy KrystIyan Dmytro to make the claim of the one
consignment metallic trunk Box worth $15M. that was deposited In Piraeus
security Financial Vaults Service by his late father Mr Borysko Dmytro.
If you are willing to help please send me the following details
Your full name
Your telephone number
With the following details we will be able to file all documentations on
your name to enable you make the claim of the funds that is with the
security company Piraeus security Financial Vaults Service.
Thanks in Anticipation, I wait to hear from you.
Michael Williams. United Nations Humanitarian Aid.