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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "will come to you as a surprise" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "trunk box" (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 orphan scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs. Candi Lynn Peterson" <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 26 Jan 2012 00:23:39 -0800
Subject: MY DEAR FRIEND....
Hello dear friend,
I know this message will come to you as a surprise, but I want you to consider yourself lucky and see it as favour from The Father Almighty to be the chosen one to manage this project, with no doubt this will be for our mutual benefit as soon as possible. I would like to take this great opportunity to introduce myself properly to you. I am Mrs. Candi Lynn Peterson from the United States Of America, widow of the late business man in the United Kingdom who died on 22nd september 2008.
I inherited a total of $15.800.000.00. dollars from my late husband, the money was concealed in a metalic trunk box and was deposited with a security and finance company in the United Kingdom, that was because I needed a maximum security/safety of my consignment and nobody or government organization can trace the where about of the money until I am ready and prepare to claim it. but the security company does not know the actual content of the box, because it was filled under a secret arrangement of family valuables.
My main purpose of sending you this e-mail is because of the way i found you and perhaps trustworthy to give you this priority of shipping the box of money to any address that you think is very secure and save in your country for onward deposit into your account for the purpose of future investment. Your percentage of which we shall discuss on as soon as i hear from you, in my next email i will send you my id, guidelines and also the Authorization document to contact the company which is the deposit document that was issued from the company on the very day the box was deposited with a secret code for safety. I give thanks immensely for your co-operation as I look forward to hear from you soon.
Wishing you the best,
Mrs. Candi Lynn Peterson.