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:
- "contact me immediately" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "chief auditor" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "David Rowland" <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 08 Aug 2012 02:40:44 +0200
Adderss:14-16 Cockspur Street,St James Gate,London - UK.
I am David Rowland;Chief Auditor and Operation Manager working with
Bank Of Scotland London, there is a project at hand I will like to
have with you.This is an investment/partnership business proposal
which I believe, will be of mutual benefit to both of us.
This massage is strictly confidential and is for your attention only.I
wish to transfer the sum of $250 000.000.00. Million which belong to
Late Deceased, Eric R.Anderson,The fund has been dormant (in- active)
for 10 years in our Bank here without anybody coming for it. I want to
release the fund to you as the nearest person to our deceased customer
Eric R.Anderson, (the owner of the account) who died a long time ago
with his supposed next of kin in air crash since on 31st July 2000.
The Bank will release the fund to you as the nearest person to the
Through my investigation, I found out that nobody knows about this
account.And Im his personal Account manager; I have with me all
the files concerning this fund.However, if you can be Honest /
confidence to me, I will detail you on how we will conclude this
transaction in 7 working days; because all the necessary arrangement
has been made before I contacted you.
Note: l will secure all the legal documentation needed to process this
claim legitimately. On receipt of your reply in acceptance; we shall
then discuss other modalities regarding this entire process. 100% will
be shared between two of us, you will be giveing 40% of the total
amount of the money, while 60% will be my share of the total. This
proposition is entirely risk free. I will use my position as the Chief
Auditor and Operation Manager to guarantee the successful execution of
this transaction. If you are interested,Kindly contact me immediately,
Upon your response, I shall then provide you with more details and
relevant documents that will help you understand this transaction well.
You can prepare agreement to bind us together with trust and send to
me,As you know that I contacted you as a total stranger without
minding your integrity. I will do everything within my position to
ensure the successful of this transaction, The rules governing the
conduct of British insurance companies, stipulates that any unclaimed
benefits more than 12 years must not be paid. After this period, the
company must discontinue the policy and terminate the insured
ownership benefits. All such funds are then deposited at the unclaimed
property division of British Federal Reserve. l will secure all the
legal documentation needed to process this claim legitimately. On
receipt of your reply in acceptance; we shall then discuss other
modalities regarding this entire process.
The intended transaction will be executed under a legitimate
arrangement that will protect us from any infraction of the law.
However, if this business proposition offends your moral ethics, do
accept my sincere apology. If on the contrary you wish to achieve this
goal with me, kindly get back to me with your interest for
furtherexplanation. I contacted you for this project because the fund
will be approved and paid to any Foreigner with the correct a/c
information and the credit balance which I will provide to you, we
will share it between us after successful completion of transfer to
I wait very urgent to hear from you.