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:
- "dearest one," (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "hundred thousand us dollars" (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)
- "liberia" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- "god fearing " (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: vena henry <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 19 Aug 2011 13:58:32 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Hi dearest one,
Hi dearest one,
Compliment of the day
My name is Miss Vena Henry ,a young girl from Ghana.Are you a God fearing fellow? I know that you may be surprise while I am asking you this question, because I have been in hell since the death of my parents and what my eyes have seen through my wicked uncle made me to fear any one I come across and i even questioning my aeon earth, please consider my situation.
I am the only surviving child to late Mr/Mrs Henry Koben. My parents were famous farmers specialised in cocoa and gold business when they were alive. After the death of my mother, my father took over the family business alone until he was poisoned by his business associate after he was given the chairman of the association in Accra known as the economic capital which he suffered the sickness and died recently. I am presently living alone in my country as an orphan.
Before his death in a private hospital when i came back from Liberia where am schooling, he called me and told me about the sum of five million seven hundred thousand US dollars ($5.7 million) he left in a fixed account in a bank here in my country, It was the money he intended to transfer overseas for foreign investment before he was poisoned.
Now i am facing a hell of pressures in my country now and the people who poisoned my father is after my life. I have been severely attacked by unknown gun men in the formal hotel where i been hiding ,right now two young girl had been killed by this assassins in that hotel as a mistaken of identity.
To will invest the money in any business you know well in your country, I am willing to offer you 30% of the total money as a reward for your assistance in the transfer and we shall discuses your percents in any profits of the investments.
Please I want you to contact me
for more info