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:
- "your country for safe keeping" (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)
- "million 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)
- ",000,000" (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)
- "30% for you " (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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Rocketmail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: suha tawil <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 28 Mar 2012 15:10:26 +0000
Subject: Sallam Aleikum.
I am Mrs. Suha Tawil Arafat, the wife of Yasser Arafat, the Palestinian leader who died in Paris. Since the death of my husband I have been humiliated by the present leadership of the Palestinian Liberation Organization. I have been subjected to physical torture.
As a widow it was so painful, I have lost confidence with everybody in the country at the moment. I think you must have heard over the media reports on the discovery of my husband hard earned fund in his bank account and allegations of some huge sums of money deposited by my late husband in my name of which I have refuses to disclose or give up to the corrupt Palestine (P.L.O).And they are not relenting on their effort to make me and my only Daughter poor. Hence my desire for a foreign assistance for the future of my only Daughter .But at the moment the issues has been solved and settled after they claimed some of my late husband funds.You can visit the BBC news broadcast below for your understanding of what I am talking about; I am now seeking your assistance in moving this fund to your care because i have made up my mind to stay off from people of Palestinian Liberation Organization.
Please I need your assistant over deposited fund amount $55,000,000,00.(Fifty-Five Million Dollars) with a Bank in abroad, So that I will permit the Bank to transfer the fund to your country for safe keeping and for lucrative business in your country in the name of my Daughter Zahwa. Please let this arrangement be known to you and I alone and l want all our correspondence should be strictly on email alone because my telephone number has been tapped and all my lines are monitoring in my country. lf you are willing to assist for our mutual benefits,
We have to negotiate on your Percentage of the $55,000,000.00 As I am ready to offer you 30% for you to assist me to buy a house and set up a business in the name of my (Daughter Zahwa) in your country and she will come and meet with you, Please do not betray me as you can as well view this report in the year August 2007 on:
This is how l was betrayed by some one l transferred my $11.5 Million Dollars to his Account and he size all the money and review my secret to his friend in Tunis, that is how l lost all the money, Please if you will be honest to me I will entrust more funds into your care and you will be having 30% percent on any of my money you receive, As this is one of the legacy that we will keep for our children.
But In case you don't accept please do not let me out to the security and international media as I am giving you this information in total confidence. Though we really do not know each other before, but I will greatly appreciate if you render me these assistants in good faith please expedite urgency. I have settled with the people of palestine this very fund now is my right so feel free.
Mrs. Suha Tawil Arafat.
Please reply here: firstname.lastname@example.org