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:
- "transferred into your bank account" (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)
- "can i trust you?" (a common phrase found 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: miss linda <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 23 Oct 2010 03:43:01 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: (Being A Foreigner)Can i trust you?
(Being A Foreigner)Can i trust you?
How are you hope all is okay with you together with your family.
I am miss linda paul, A staff of one of the commercial bank in COTE D'IVOIRE.I am pleased to get across to you for a very urgent and profitable business proposal, though I don't know you neither have I seen you before but my confidence was reposed on you. A contract file worth ( US$45.350.000) Dollars with the name like yours has been noticed lying waste in our contract and account department that is why i countacted you for you and i to run the deal.
As one of our international remittance director, I am obliged to notify you, Now (being a foreigner) I want this money to be transferred into your bank account in your country for us to share 50/50 all i need from you is your honesty and you will promise me that you will not run away with this money.Again i want to let you know that this fortune was only disclosed to you so i demand you keep it as a secret for the sucessful conclusion of it.
NB: Please if you are interested with the deal, kindly respond back with your full name and address,fax/phone numbers, to enable us proceed immediately without any delay because is a deal i want this money to transfer into your bank account for too of us.
1. NAME IN FULL...
7. MARITAL STATUS.....
10.Your Passport Copy.
Upon the receipt of this mail please send me your full names, telephone/fax number, and email address. Your earliest response to this letter will be appreciated. You can call me at my number for more information +22504085643
I require you to treat this letter with the utmost urgency.
miss linda paul