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:
- "abidjan" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: liz bassam <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 4 Jun 2010 03:06:05 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: FROM MISS LIZ
FROM MISS LIZ
Dear Respectful One
I am writting you this letter with due respect and heartful of tears since we have not known or met each orther before, I am asking for your assistance after I have gone through a profile that speaks good of you. I will be so glad if you can allow me and lead me to the right channel towards your assistance . firstly, I have to introduce my self to you,
My name is liz Bassam, I am 20 years old single girl, I am studying geology at East Legon University , I am the daughter of Late Mr. Samson Bassam an Australian Citizen I have his passport here with me whichi i can send to you.but I am born here in Cote dâivore, My father was the director of Compagnie Ivoirienne D'Electricite (CIE), He was assassinated by the Rebels on one of his visit to their contract site at Bourke, the Rebels claimed that my father was in support of the government in the war that nearly divided this country into two parts, my mother died when I was small so I was in school in east legon University in Ghana the neighboring Country when the news of my fathers death hit me, ever since then thinghs has not being the same with me. My mother is from Uganda so I donât have any relation here.
Right now I am staying in the church power of life Gospel church because the war here brought a lot of displacement I donât have family here so there is no where to run to,
I would like to appeal to you confidentially to assist me concerning my late father's deposit here in Abidjan of $3.500,000,00, ( three million five hundered thousand USD) I want to move out of here because the crisis that started here for some time now is still on and there is no sign that it will be well with the country. The government has scheduled election for November and the Rebels are seriously threatening the government for another war.
If you are willing to assist me I am ready to send you every informationâs about my father including his passport and the document of the fund and any information that you will need for your verifications and proof.
Can you sincerely assist me in transferring this fund into your account and assist me In coming over to meet you in your country,
Can you assist me in securing a school so that I can complete my education?
Can you invest this fund in a lucrative business for me for the period of 5 years so that After completion of my education I will join you on the business.
Can I trust you to provide a place for me to stay? Can I also trust you to safe keep this fund when it transferred to your account?
If you are willing to help please indicate in your next mail and let me know so that I can mail to you the documents and make arrangement for the deposit to be released to you. Let me have your full address and I will discuss with you some details. Let me know in your discussion what you expect to deduct when the transfer is made to you, i mean the percentage,
Waiting for your response,