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 state 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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: Budi Setiawan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 2 Apr 2010 08:10:47 +0700
Subject: urgent respond
*From Dr Setiawan Budi.
Auditing and Account Manager
Lippo Bank Jakarta Indonesia.
I am a staff of Lippo Bank Jakarta. I am writing following an opportunity
in my office that will be of immense benefit to both of us. In my department
I discovered an abandoned sum of Ten Million united state dollars ($10m)in
an account that belongs to one of our foreign customers Late Mr.clerk Lund
an American who unfortunately lost his life in the Tsunami disaster in
Thailand 2005.including his wife and only daughter.since I got information
about his death, I have been expecting his next of kin or relatives to come
over and claim his money because the bank cannot release it unless somebody
applies for it as next of kin or relation to the deceased as indicated in
our banking guidelines.Unfortunately I lent that his supposed next of kin
being his only daughter died along with him in the Tsunami disaster leaving
nobody with the knowledge of this fund behind for the claim. It is therefore
upon this discovery that I decided to make business with you to enable the
Bank release the money to you as the next of kin or beneficiary of the funds
for safety keeping and subsequent disbursement since nobody is coming for it
and I don't want this money to go back into Bank treasury as unclaimed bill.
The banking law and guidelines here stipulates that such money remained
after five years the money will be transferred into banking treasury as
unclaimed funds.I agreed that 30% of this money will be for you as foreign
partner,10% will be use to upset expenses that might in cure on the cost of
making this transaction a success while 60% will be for me. Please note that
all necessary arrangement for the smooth release of these funds to you has
been finalized.You can contact me with my private email:
Dr Setiawan Budi.*