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:
- "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 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Col. Brian D. Kent" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 28 Mar 2012 17:47:16 +0100
Hello my good friend ,
I am Colonel Brian D. Kent, an officer of the U.S Army. I just moved to Afghanistan from Iraq as one of the last batch that just left, During my services in Iraq, I was been able to secure Three Million Five Hundred Thousand Dollar($3.5 million U.S Dollars) which is my own share of the money we shared among ourselves that belong to Saddem Hussein and his family. i have carefully arrange the said fund in a military consignment trunk box.
I want to hand over this funds to a Trust Worthy Person that we help me keep it safe, till am back from the Camp in Afghanistan in august 2012,could you be trusted? kindly send me your name and mobile number for easy communication.
You will find the story of this money on the web address below. After we have submitted the remaining part http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/2967029.stm
Please kindly keep this transaction Confidential because I am still serving in the Military camp in Afghanistan.
Col. Brian D. Kent
United States Marine Corps. Kabul