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 deposit" (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)
- "hundred thousand 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)
- "can i completely trust you?" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- This email message is a orphan 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 (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "DAVID JOHNSON KUFFI" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 27 Sep 2002 00:24:34 -0700
Subject: Good Day, 13/4/2010
FROM DAVID JOHNSON KUFFI
ADDRESS/Accra-Ghana AVE 11 RUE 45
EMAIL CONTACT: firstname.lastname@example.org
With respect and humility, I decided to send this proposal to you, this however is not mandatory nor will I in any manner compel you to honor against your will.
I am David Johnson Kuffi , 22years old and the only son of my late parents Mr. and Mrs. Michael Kuffi, My father was a highly reputable business man (a cocoa merchant and suppliers of agro allied material ) who operated in the capital of Ivory coast during his days.
It is sad to say that he passed away mysteriously in France during one of his business trips in abroad in February 2003. Though his sudden death was linked or rather suspected to have been masterminded by an uncle of his who traveled with him at that time. But God knows the truth! My mother died when I was just 4 years old, and since then my father took me so special.
Before his death on February 12, 2003, he told me about the deposit of (USD$18.7M) eighteen million, seven hundred thousand United State Dollars. which he deposited in one of the Banks here in Accra Ghana.
I contacted you to assist in repatriating the money and property left behind by my father before they get confiscated or declared unserviceable by the Bank where this huge deposit were lodged.
I have in my possession the deposit document which the Bank gave to my late father when he deposited the fund. I really don't know what to do.
This is because I have suffered a lot as a result of incessant political crisis here in Accra-Ghana. I want to use your position to get this fund and move it to your country so that i can invest the fund into a business ventures in your favour.
The death of my father actually brought sorrow to my life. I am in a sincere desire of your assistance in this regards. Your suggestions and ideas will be highly regarded. Now permit me to ask these few questions:-
1 . Can you honestly and willingly help me as your Brother? 2. Can I completely trust you?
3. What percentage of the total amount in question will be good for you after the money is in your country?
Please, Consider this and get back to me though this email address email@example.com
as soon as possible with the under listed information to enable us proceed immediately.
 CONTACT ADD:...................
 AGE: ..........SEX:.............
 TEL.............. FAX:..........
 OCCUPATION: ..............
 MARITAL STATUS: ..............
Thank you so much.
My sincere regards.
David Johnson Kuffi