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:
- ",500,000" (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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "James" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 7 Feb 2011 05:06:49 +0800
Subject: I NEED YOUR ASSISTANCE
My name is Mr.James Hord and I work with a Commercial Bank here in Malaysia. We had a customer and deal tycoon who had a
3,500,000.00 (Three Million ,500 thousand Pound Sterlings GBP) before he lost his life in a Car crash with his wife and only Child
about 9years now (January 30,2005) and since he lost, we in the Bank here have been expecting his/her relative(s) for the inheritance of the 3,500,000.00, but none has surfaced.
and The policy of the Bank however stipulates a limited time period for such inheritance to be made or the 3,500,000.00 will be written
off going by the record of the incident, the time limit for identifying is closing up Soon for the relatives to show up or
the account will be closed and i came to have the knowledge of this as the auditor in the bank. I happen to come across this file when i was going through the records.
We can get this inheritance for our benefit in view of the fact that you are not from Malaysia .
If you can stand as the relative in this project success is assured because
I assure you that there will be no problem that may arise as a result of this.
This deal will last only about 3-7 days if you will follow my instruction.
The Share will 60% for me and 40% for you.
Get back to me for us to proceed
Mr. James Hord