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.
Click here to report a problem with this page.
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.
- 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:
- "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 next of kin scam.
- 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: "REV.MATT MIKE" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 25 Apr 2012 10:31:57 -0700
Subject: STAND AS NEXT OF KIN PROPOSER!!!....184.108.40.206
I am Rev.Matt Mike, a banker, personal account officer to Late Engineer
Robert Kurt. I would like to know if this proposal will be worth while for
your acceptance and which i will be i glad if you can stand by me and act as
the next of kin to the deceased
I have a Foreign Client who is an Investor, Crude Oil Merchant and Federal
Government Contractor that was a victim with Korean Air Line, flight number
801 with the whole families and passengers leaving a fund valued US$20.5
million left behind by my client. I have contacted you to assist in
repatriating this fund before it gets confiscated or declared unserviceable
by his (bank) where this huge amount was deposited.
Base on my security report, these funds can be claimed without any hitches
as no one is aware of the funds and its closing balance except me and the
client (Now Deceased)
I can present you as the Next of Kin and we will work out the modalities for
the claiming of the funds in accordance with the law. If you are interested,
Please email me back Your Full NAME, Your COUNTRY and your direct PHONE
NUMBER and you OCCUPATION to discuss in further details and our sharing
ratio will be 60% for me and 30% for you while 10% will be for the necessary
expenses that might occur along the line.