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:
- "hundred thousand us 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)
- "contact me immediately" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "top secret" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- "remain blessed" (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- 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: Owomah Owomah <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 28 Jul 2011 11:52:13 +0100 (BST)
Subject: URGENT KINDNESS.
MR. OWOMA OWOMAH.
CREDIT & MARKETING,MANAGER,
ECO BANK OF GHANA,
Dear Good Friend,
How are you ? I hope you're in good state of health, remain blessed. I'm writing you from Accra Ghana, a country situated in Africa. I am Mr.Owoma Owomah,the manager in charge of Credit and marketing, here in Eco Bank Ghana. I have been working with this Bank for 18years but I have nothing to show for my efforts and honesty.So in my department I discovered an abandoned sum of $ 5.5m, US,dollars (FIVE MILLION FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND US DOLLARS) . In an account that belongs to one of our, foreign customers, who died along with his entire family in a plane crash. Veiw this Website below.
Since we got information about the death of this Bank customer from Germany, the Bank top officials here have been expecting his next of kin to come up and claim the money that is left behind here in my Bank and because we cannot release the fund unless somebody applies for the fund as next of kin or the relation to the deceased Bank customer as indicated in our Banking guidelines but unfortunately we learn t that all his supposed next of kin or relation died alongside with him at the plane crash leaving nobody behind for the claim. So it is upon this discovery from the investigation which i made in my Bank here that I decided to contact you into this business proposal and also guide you here for the Bank top official to release the money to you as the next of kin or relation to the deceased Bank customer for safety and subsequent disbursement of the whole fund in your country after the approval of this fund in my Bank here since nobody is coming up for
WHY I CONTACTED YOU:
The purpose of my mail to you is to solicit for a willing partner to come forward and stand as the next of kin to claim this fund.I will provide you with all the information that will enable you file an application for claim.Be sure that the Bank will grant approval based on the information which i will provide. I want you to act fast because according to the law of Ghana, if anyone died leaving unclaimed fund in the Bank, after 8 years the fund will belong to the state and goes to state treasury. But the irony of the matter is that these funds really does not go into the purse of the state government but rather its usually diverted and shared by both the powerful individuals in the government and higher officials of the Banks.
They allocate the funds to themselves and later use the money for their political gains and to wage war in the sub-region. So for almost my 18 years of service to this Bank, I have seen a lot hence I don't want this opportunity to pass me by, as the same thing keep on repeating itself.
That is why i agree that 40% of this money will be for you as a foreign partner, in respect to the provision of a foreign account, and 60% of the total fund would be for me. And all incidental expenses that may occur during the transfer process will be incurred by both of us.
As soon as the whole fund is transferred into your foreign nominated Bank account in your Country then i will visit your Country for the disbursement of the fund according to the percentages indicated above.
Therefore to enable the immediate transfer of this fund to you as arranged by me here, you must apply first to the Bank as a cousin that is related to the late Bank customer or the next of kin of the deceased Bank customer in the Bank here indicating below:
Your Full Name........................,
Your Bank Name.......................,
Your private telephone No..............,
Your Fax No.........................,
This is for easy and effective communication and also the location where the money will be remitted into. Please note that upon receipt of your reply, i will immediately send to you by fax or email the text of the next of kin application. I will also not fail to bring to your notice that this transaction is a hitch - free business transaction and that you should not entertain any atom of fear as all required arrangements on how this whole fund will be transferred into your private nominated Bank account in your country has smoothly arranged by me here. You should contact me immediately as soon as you receive this letter. Trusting to hear from you immediately.
TEL:. +233 5487-30329
My intention of writing you through email is because i believe it is very urgent and confidential, and it still remains the fastest medium of communication