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:
- "keep it confidential" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- 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.
- +221763977730 (Senegal, probably a prepaid mobile phone)
Fraud email example:
From: gusto jeanbazz <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 2 Sep 2009 15:23:33 +0000
Subject: Mutual Benefits
My name is Mr.Jeanbazz Gusto a bonifide origin of sudan.Please I want you to assist me in transfering the sum of /US$16.2Million(Sixteen Million,Two Hundred Thousand Dollars)which my late father Mr George Gusto deposited a United Kingdom Firm.
By statutory implications the fund will be handed over to the united kingdom government authorities if i did not withdrawl it within the next two months. All I need from you is to stand as the beneficiary of the above quoted sum and I will re-profile the funds documents in your name, which will enable the firm to transfer the fund into your account.
I have every details on how you will go about it and i will instruct you on what to do as soon as I hear from you.I will give you 15% share of percentage for your acceptance to partnership with me in this direction and above all,I intend to invest my share into properties pending our agreement to work together as partners.
While Thanking you for the confidence ,i look forward to have a mutually benefit business relationship with you .
Please i want you to indicate your interest in assisting me to tranfer this fund/money into your account, by sending your following contacts to me:
*YOUR FULL NAMES AND ADDRESS
*TELEPHONE AND FAX NUMBERS
Immedaitely i receive this informations, the services of a legal expert will be required to procure the documents that will be use from the ministry of justice in Dakar to facilitate the transfer of the fund into your legitimate account. I guess you will keep it confidential,it is riskfree transaction.
Please treat as urgent to prevent delay.
Awaiting your reply.