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:
- 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:
- "hundred thousand us 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)
- ",500,000" (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)
- "remain blessed" (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- This email message is a orphan scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "firstname.lastname@example.org" <email@example.com>
Date: Sun, 1 Jul 2012 15:07:18 +0800 (SGT)
From: Miss Juliette Kouauo
Telephone : +22567419814
ASSISTANCE TO INVEST IN YOUR COUNTRY.
For sure this mail would definitely come to you as a surprise, but do take your good time to go through it, My name is Juliette Kouauo, from Sierra Leone. I lost my father some years ago. My father was a director of the Agro-exporting board until his death.
As the only daughter of my late father before his death he informed me of the sum of US$25,500,000.00 (twenty five million five hundred thousand US dollars) deposited here.
Meanwhile I want to travel out of Ivory Coast entirely because of the political crisis here in my country,I want you to assist me move this money into your nominated private account in your country.
You shall also search for good investment, so that I will invest the money wisely. I have agreed to give you 10% of the total sum and 5% mapped out for expenses. Immediately you receive this message for more information to enable me proceed in earnest towards concluding all arrangements to transfer the fund. No other person knows about this money only you.
Awaiting your most urgent response.
Thanks for your co-operation and remain blessed.
Miss Juliette Kouauo