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:
- "transferred into your bank account" (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)
- "hundred thousand united states 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)
- "very confidential" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Peter Attah" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 26 May 2012 11:50:02 -0500
Subject: RE: Mail from Peter Attah.
Mail from Peter Attah.
Greetings to you, Pardon me for not having the pleasure of knowing your mindset before making you this offer and it is utterly confidential and genuine by virtue of its nature. My intention of writing you through email is because I believe it is very confidential. I feel quite safe and satisfy dealing with you in this Mutual Beneficial transaction. Through this medium (Internet) has been greatly abused, I choose to reach you through it because it still remains the fastest, surest and most secured Medium of communication.
I write to solicit your assistance in a funds transfer deal involving $10,500,000.00(Ten million five hundred thousand United States dollars) This fund has been stashed out of the excess profit made last 3 years by my branch of my bank which I am the manager in Tema branch. And I have monitored the fund for the past 3 years which the headquarters of my bank is not aware of the fund.
I have already submitted an approved end-of-the-year report for the year 2009/2010/2011 to our headquarters here in Accra and they will never know of this excess. I have since then, placed this amount on a Escrow account without a beneficiary (anonymous). Upon your response, I will configure your name on our system database as holder of the Escrow Account. I will then guide you on how to apply to my head office for the Account Closure/bank-to-bank remittance of the funds to your designated bank account.
The way this transaction is it can not generate any problem in 100 years to come because am fully behind this transaction for am using my wealth of banking experience as a manager to package this transaction, when the money has been transferred into your bank account, you and I will share it equally. I want us to do this business on the basis of trust for the benefit of our both families and I do not want any betrayal.
Please kindly send me the information below for me to queue in (program) your name on my banks data as the rightful beneficiary to the fund.
1. Full Name:
2. Your Present Residential:
3. Direct Contact Phone/Fax/ Mobile Number:
4. Your Age:
5. Your Country:
6. Your Occupation: