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:
- "necessary legal documents" (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "greater london" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
- +447031824662 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
Fraud email example:
From: "Credit Suisse Bank" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 10 Jan 2013 19:20:58 +0400
Subject: WHY ARE YOU KEEPING MUTE ?
Compliments of the season,
How are you today? I hope fine, I know this Email will come to you as a
big surprise,This is the second time am sending you this Letter, the truth
is i got your Email contact on the Internet and decided to contact you
regarding this Business Proposal.
I am Dr Christopher Johnson Head of Accounting Audit Department of credit
Suisse bank, One Cabot Square, London E14 4QJ London, here in England. I
am writing you from my office which will be of a great immense benefit for
both of us. In my department being the assistant manager (Greater London
region), I discovered an abandoned sum of £16.5 Million GBP (Sixteen
Million Five hundred Thousand Pounds Sterling) in an account that belongs
to one of our foreign customers Late Mr. Moises Saba, a Jew from Mexico
that was a victim of a helicopter crash on 10th January 2010 killing him
and family members. Mr Saba was 46-years-old,also in the chopper at the
time of the crash was his wife Adela Tuachi, their son Avraham (Alberto)
and his daughter-in-law Judith,The pilot was also dead.
The choice of contacting you is aroused from the geographical nature Of
where you live, particularly due to the sensitivity of the transaction and
the confidentiality herein, Now our bank has been waiting for any of the
relatives to come-up for the claim but nobody has done that, I personally
has been unsuccessful in locating the relatives, I seek your consent to
present you as the Next of kin /Will Beneficiary to the deceased so that
the proceeds of This account valued at £16.5 Million GBP can be paid to
This will be disbursed or shared in these percentages, 60% to me and 40%
to you, I have secured all necessary legal documents that we can used to
back up this claim. All I need is to fill in Your names to the documents
and legalize it in the court here to prove You as the legitimate
beneficiary. All I need now is your honest Co-operation, Confidentiality
and Trust to enable us see this Transaction through. I guarantee you that
this will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect you
from any breach of the law.
If you are interested in this DEAL, kindly provide me the following
Details as we have Seven Working days to run this DEAL through:
1. Your Full Names:
2. Your Telephone and Fax Number:
3. Your Contact Address:
4. Your Age/Gender:
5. Your Job/Occupation:
6. Your Private Email address
7. Your Nationality
Having gone through a methodical search, I decided to contact you Hoping
that you will find this proposal interesting, Please on your Confirmation
of this message and indicating your interest, I will furnish you with more
information. Please contact me by Phone: +447031824662 or my Email
Endeavor to let me know your decision rather than keeping me waiting.