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:
- 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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: KOFFI JOHNSON <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 11 Feb 2011 11:22:52 +0000 (GMT)
I need you to help me to transfer and invest my fund in your country.
I am in COTE D'IVOIRE (IVORY COAST) and due to heavy political crisis here now as you can see it in everyday BBC and CNN news; I want to transfer my fund to your account and you help me to invest the fund profitably in your country.
The money is legally owned and transferable. I am prepared to give you 15% percent of the total amount as commission for assisting me.
Kindly get back to me for details as soon as possible.