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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "a security company " (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "the consignment" (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)
- "consignment " (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.
- 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: 000009 000001 <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 26 Nov 2011 08:56:14 +0700
Subject: Assist Us
It is my pleasure to contact you for a business venture which I and my
Son[Konan],intend to establish in
Though I have not met with you before but I believe, one has to risk
confiding in someone to succeed
sometimes in life.
There is this amount of Fifteen Million Five hundred US Dollars
($15.500.000.00)which my late Husband
deposited with a security company in Europe which he wanted to used for his
political reason in our Country
before he was assassinated.
Now I and my son have decided to invest these money in your country or
anywhere safe enough outside
Africa for security and political reasons.We want you to help us claim and
receive the consignment which
will be sent to you through diplomatic means to your address to avoid any
traces of the funds and to enable
you plan for the investment in your Country:
I will like to invest part of the money into these three investment in your
Country but, if there is any other
business that is better than what I am suggestion, I will be very glad to
follow your advice.
1). Real estate
2). The transport industry
3). Five star hotel
If you can be of an assistance to us we will be pleased to offer to you
20% Of the total fund while the
balance will be invested by you.
I await your soonest response at :email@example.com