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.
Click here to report a problem with this page.
Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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:
- "please endeavor to " (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "huge sum 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)
- "00,000.00" (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)
- "contact me immediately" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- This email message is a next of kin 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 (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr Jason" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 30 Dec 2010 22:24:24 -0000
Subject: PROJECT MAIL.
My name is Mr.Jason smith, I am the credit manager in a bank here in the United Kingdom. I am contacting you of a business transfer, of a huge sum of money from a deceased account. Though I know that a transaction of this magnitude will make any one apprehensive and worried, but I am assuring you that everything has been taken care off, and all will be well at the end of the day. I decided to contact you due to the urgency of this transaction. PROPOSITION; I am the account officer of a foreigner named Richard Burson who died in an air crash along with his wife on the 31st October 1999 in an Egyptian airline 990 with other passengers on board. You can confirm this from the website below which was published by BBC WORLD NEWS. WEBSITE.
Since his death, none of his next-of-kin are alive to make claims for this money as his heir, because they all died in the same accident himself and his wife (May their soul rest in peace). We cannot release the fund from his account unless someone applies for claim as the next-of-kin to the deceased as indicated in our banking guidelines. Upon this discovery, I now seek your permission to have you stand as a next of kin to the deceased, as all documentations will be carefully worked out by me for the funds (£7,800,000.00) seven million eight hundred thousand pounds to be released in your favor as the beneficiary's next of kin. Because after twelve years the money will be called back to the bank treasury as unclaimed bills and the money shared amongst the directors of the bank. so it is on this note i decided to seek for whom his name shall be used as the next of kin/beneficiary to this funds rather than allow the bank directors to share this money amongst themselves at the end of the year. It may interest
1. A Beneficiary name..In order for me to prepare the document for transfer of the funds in your name.
2. Direct Telephone and fax numbers...For our personal contact and mutual trust in each other. (50/50)share for both party 50% comes to my account and 50% to your account. I intend to retire after the conclusion of this transaction.
If this proposal is acceptable by you, please endeavor to contact me
immediately via my personal email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Do not take undue advantage of the trust I have bestowed in you, I await your urgent mail.
N.B. Please note that you will not be responsible for any financial cost in this transaction.It will be taken care of.