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:
- "huge amount of money" (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)
- "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)
- ",000,000" (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 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Grey Wadah<firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 07 Dec 2018 07:28:58 +1100
Subject: Can I trust you?
Dear: Sir/Madam, =
You may be surprise to receive this email since you don=2019t know me perso=
nally, but with due respect, trust and humility, this proposal is from I, M=
r. Grey Wadah, Son of Mr. Kariem and Mrs. Miriam Wadah of Darfur Sudan, ind=
eed my pleasure to contact you for assistance of a business venture which I=
intend to establish in your country. =
My Dear, I got your contact while I was doing a private research on the Int=
ernet for a reliable foreign partner that will assist me and my family to t=
ransfer sum (funds) to your personal (private) and/or company account for i=
nvestment purpose. =
Though I have not met with you before, but considering the recent political=
instabilities in my country, I believe one has to risk self-reliance in su=
ccess sometimes in life. Note; there is a huge amount of money ($15,000,000=
.00 U.S Dollar) Fifteen Million United State Dollars)which my late Father d=
eposited in a private security company awaiting claim before he was assassi=
nated by unknown persons during this war in Darfur Sudan. =
Now I have decided to invest the said fund in your country or anywhere safe=
for security reasons. I have mutually agreed to compensate you with 40% of=
the total amount if you agree to assist me. Contact me via e-mail on: =
And I will provide to you pertinent details concerns the said fund and way =
forward. All I require is your honest & kind cooperation; I will give you f=
urther detail as soon as you show interest for help. =
Best Regards Mr.
Contact Email: =201Cmrwadahgrey@daum.net=201D