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:
- "hundred thousand u.s 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)
- "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: Flany Koneh <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 10 Oct 2012 23:57:25 +0800 (SGT)
Subject: Message From Flany Koneh
Message From Flany Koneh
Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire, West Africa.
Dear God's elect,
I am writing this letter with due respect and heartily of tears since we have not known or met ourselves previously. I am asking for your assistance after I have gone through a profile that speaks good of you. I will be so glad if you can allow and lead me to the right channel towards your assistance to my situation now. I will make my proposal well known if I am given the opportunity.
I would like to use this opportunity to introduce myself to you. well, i am Miss Flany Koneh young girl and I know that this proposal might be a surprise to you but do consider it as an emergency In nutshell, My (late) father Mr Johnson Koneh was a very wealthy gold and cocoa merchant who based in Abidjan respectively. But he was killed along side with my mother during last year's Rebel attack and all his properties was totally destroyed.
However, after their death I managed to escape with a very important document (DEPOSIT
CERTIFICATE (US$10.5) Ten Million Five Hundred thousand U.S Dollars deposited by my late father in the bank which i am the next of kin.
Meanwhile,i am saddled with the problem of securing a trust worthy foreign personality to help me transfer the money over to his country and into his possession pending my arrival to meet with him. Furthermore,you can contact the bank for confirmation and i will issue a letter of authorization on your name,that will enable the bank to deal with you on my behalf.
I am giving you this offers as mentioned with every confidence on your acceptance
to assist me or take me as your child and manage the money. I am inclined to offer you 15% of the total sum as a mode of compensation for your effort after the successful transferring of these fund to your nominated account overseas Conclusively, i wish you send me a reply immediately as soon as you receive this proposal, please write me back ,