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:
- "top secret" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "PAUL .S.AJIMOR" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 24 Aug 2012 12:06:10 -0400
Subject: FOREIGN BENEFICIARY!!
I hope this may not constitute sort of embarrassment to you, but I will be very please if this transaction will make us know each other as we both are going to benefit from this transaction, First I must solicit your confidence in this transaction, this is by virtue of its nature as being utterly confidential and top secret. But I am assuring you that all will be well at the end of the day.
I have decided to contact you due to the urgency of this transaction, as we have been reliably informed of your discreetness and ability in transaction of this nature. Let me start by introduce my self properly to you, my names is PAUL AJIMOR, I am the citizen of Libya, the only surviving son of Late Dr AJIMOR SOLOMON, in Libya.
My father has a very fatal accident on his way going to office, and he was roach down to the nearby hospital, and spends five days in the hospital before he died, my father did not keep any thing in secret from me any day.
Before my father gave up , he show me all the necessary document that cover his fund contained $4.5 million united state dollar usd and box of gold in one of the reliable Security Company in west Africa in Accra Ghana. And among all the document, his will was also attached, that I am the only son , we be the person to make a choices, and to have right to look for a foreign beneficiary, also among of Those document that my father gave to me, one of it also started that the security company should not release the fund to me , without contacting[ A FOREIGN BENEFICIARY].
That is why I am now contacting you, for you to stand as my foreign beneficiary, so that the fund can be releases and transfer to you in your country, so that I can come to your country for my further education, I want you to go true it, and get back to me. -