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:
- "liberia" (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: "Julieth Williams" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 10 Jun 2009 01:33:04 -0000
Subject: FROM MISS JULIETH WILLIAMS.
Dearest trusted one,
Based on the trust and God's divine guidance that I have this great oppoutunity linking up to you, though we have not meet before but I believe that one have to risk in confiding his secret to succeed sometimes in life.
My name is Julieth Williams, 19 years old undergraduate.I am only daughter of chief/Mrs Paul williams a major cocoa exporter cum politician.I am native of Lorma in western part of liberia,Africa.
I was born out of tragic fate.my mother died from cancer when i was only 4 years old,my father nurtured me with great care and love before he met his own untimely death on the way coming back from business trip from overseas,on his arrival to the airport his driver went to drove him back home on the way they have a fatal car accident which killied his driver at spot while my father spent 3 painful days at hospital before dying.my uncle seized all my father's companies and properties because of our traditionl believe that i'm a woman.I was left with nothing and dropped out of shool because of finacial difficulties and my uncle's wicked attitude.
my father told me a deep secret on his sick bed which I want to share with you in a full confidentiality.He deposited a huge sum of 14 million Dollers (14,OOO,OOO USD)in one of reputable security company in Ivory Coast because of polictical instability in our country Liberia without the knowledge of my uncle.presently i'm in ivory coast since the civil war broke out in liberia as a refugee in one of missionary home while my uncle flew to the london with his children.although i have contacted the security company they comfirmed the logdement.
Dearest all I want you to do for me is to step forward as my foreign partner to the security company so that the money will be retrieve,I have all the neccesary information to back you up.i will sincerely give you 12% out of the money,5% for any expenses incurred during the transaction and the rest will be used for any investement preferred by you in your country.
I am pleading to you with the name of Almighty God to help me out of this problem.coincidentally Ivory coast is now having it's own political unrest too,
I am kindly waiting for your soonest response.
MAY GOD BLESS YOU.
All my love,