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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
- 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 (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "MANUEL FOUNDATIONS." <email@example.com>
Reply-To: MANUEL FRANCO <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 3 Mar 2023 21:15:07 +0530 (IST)
Subject: VERY IMPORTANT
I hope this email finds you well. I am reaching out because I am interested in making a donation to random individuals who may be in need of financial assistance. I believe that even a small amount of money can make a big difference in someone's life, and I would like to help in any way I can.
I am writing to make a donation of $4.500,000 to you. The donation will be transferred to your bank account using Bank to Bank transfers or cash at hand on 03/03/2023. Please find below the necessary details to complete the transaction:
If you are within Europe and decide to pick up the money cash please note. The cash pick up will be carried out here in Amsterdam Netherlands
Thank you for your time and consideration. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me.
I would be grateful if you could share information with me. I am particularly interested in supporting those who are struggling to make ends meet, have experienced unexpected expenses, or are facing medical bills.I am eager to make a positive impact on people's life and appreciate any help you can provide.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
The information contained in this mail message and/or attachments to it may contain confidential or privileged information of the Department. This message is intended only for you. If you are not the intended recipient, you are notified that disclosing, copying, distributing or taking any action in reliance on the contents of this information is strictly prohibited by the Department. If you have erroneously received this message, please immediately delete it, notify the sender and inform the Call Centre. This e-mail reply is only intended to provide clarity/explanation to the request mail. It cannot be used for any legal purposes. This e-mail is of confidential nature and intended solely for the use of the individual/entity to whom they are addressed and not binding any agreement on behalf of the department.