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)
- "cotonou" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- This email message is a orphan scam.
Fraud email example:
From: princesses Erina Ibrahim <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 30 Aug 2011 11:49:30 +0100 (BST)
Subject: From : Erina Ibrahim Youssef.
>From : Erina Ibrahim Youssef.
Urgent / Assistance
Hello Dear ,
I have Decided to get in touch with you,to see if you can help me solve my problem. My Name is Erina Ibrahim Youssef. My Late Parents Mr.& Ibrahim Youssef Toure. had lost there life in the course of the Political crisis that result to War in Abidjan-Cote d'Ivoire.My
Late father, Ibrahim Youssef. willed in cash, the sum of $5.5M US. Dollars which he deposited with a bank in BENIN REPUBLIC INCOTONOU, for onward transfer into overseas account for investment purpose. before he died with enabling conditionalities for the release of the fund which areas follows:
1) That I must be 25 years or above.(2) That upon request for the release of the fund, there must be evidence of investment intentions especially outside the west africa, I contact you therefore to confirm if you can absorb me in partnership in your company orpossibly advise me on any investment opportunity in your country.
1) To assist me in retriving this money from the bank.
2) To serve as the guardian of this fund.
3) To make arrangement for me to come over to your country to further.
my education and to secure a residential permit in your country moreover, I am willing to offer you 20% of the total sum as compensation for your effort/input after the successful transfer of this fund to your nominated account overseas.
Erina Ibrahim Youssef.