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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a "New Partner from Paraguay" scam.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
Fraud email example:
From: "Barr.David Wealth" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 20 Apr 2010 02:36:54 +0300
Subject: Contact Mrs Rose Madi for Your Compensation Fund
This is Barrister.David Wealth, I am very glad to cheer with you once again.
Hope this mail find you in an excellent condition of health.I'm happy to inform you about my success in getting those funds transferred under the co-operation of a new partner from Paraguay.
Presently I'm in South Korea for investment projects with my own share of the total sum. Meanwhile i didn't forget you're past efforts and attempts to assist me in transferring those funds despite that it failed us some how.
Now contact my secretary in Nigeria, her name is MRS.ROSE WILLIAMS MADI and her email address is ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) ask her to send you the draft check of $950,000,00 Nine hundred and fithy thousand United States Dollars which I kept for your compensation for all your past efforts and attempts to assist me in this matter.I appreciated your efforts at that time very much .
So feel free and get intouch with my secretary Mrs Rose Williams Madi and instruct her where to send the amount to you. Please do let me know immediately you receive it so that we can share the joy after all the sufferings at that time. I'm very busy here because of the investment projects which me and the new partner are having at hand,finally, remember that I had forwarded instruction to My secretary on your behalf to receive those moneys feel free to get in touch with Mrs Rose Williams Madi she will send the amount to you without any delay.