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 united state 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)
- "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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "your humble assistance" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "abidjan" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Linda Dikko <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 8 Sep 2012 11:47:56 +0100 (BST)
Subject: Hello dear,
I am Miss Linda Dikko, 21 years old, from Abidjan economic capital city of Coted'Ivoire. I solicit your urgent help to get my inheritance transfered to your account overseas because of the political instability.The amount involve is Six Million, Seven Hundred thousand United State Dollars.(USD$6,700,000.00)left in fixed deposit account in one of the leading banks in Africa. Presently I am in the refugee camp under the security of (UN) United Nations High Commission for Refugees.I want to invest the money in your country and continue my studies.
This is because I have suffered a lot of set backs as a result of political crisis here in Ivory coast. The death of my father actually brought sorrow to my life.... I also want to invest the fund under your care because I am ignorant of business world.
I am in a sincere desire of your humble assistance in this regards. Your suggestions and ideas will be highly regarded.
Immedaitely I confirm your willingness, I will send to you my Picture and also inform you more details involved in this matter.
Miss Linda Dikko