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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "million united states dollars" (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 next of kin scam.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
- 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: joshread kim <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 4 Mar 2023 18:45:31 +0800
Subject: GREETING FROM LOME TOGO
Please I am a solicitor at law and personal attorney to your late relative,
a national of your country. Who died here in the year 2018, with his wife
and their only daughter. I have contacted you as the beneficiary/next of
kin to his estate fund valued at Thirty Million United States Dollars
($30,000.000) However he deposited the fund before his death. Your
immediate/urgent attention is highly needed and don't fail to call me now.
Call me for more information and directive. You are also advised to provide
the listed information below.
First and last name:
Contact me on this email: firstname.lastname@example.org
I look forward to hearing from you asap.
With Kind Regards,
HAGGERTY BLAUCH ESQ
74 Rue du Segbe