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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "very confidential" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- "is 100% risk free" (almost true for the criminal trying to scam you - arrests of online criminals are rare)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- This email lists free webmail addresses. Use of such addresses is typical for scams. Lotteries, banks and any but the smallest of companies do not normally use such addresses. Criminals use them to anonymously send and receive email at Internet cafes.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: Ms. Jenny Ali <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 20 Oct 2012 23:26:07 +0000
Subject: GREETINGS TO YOU
Good day !!
With great pleasure, I am writing this proposal to you and i apologize for using this medium to convey this message to you. However, I consider you a reliable and capable hand to handle a transaction of this magnitude and i believe you are credible and reliable. Due to the sensitivity of this transaction and my commitment as a banker, i urge for your consent in this great opportunity.
I am Ms. Jenny Ali, the head of auditing and accounting section of HONG LEONG BANK - KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA. We had a foreign customer, physician by profession and an owner of a cadbury manufacturing Company from the Caribbean . Eventually, he died on Saturday 12 March 2011 in the recent earth quake in Japan while on a vacation. He had deposited a huge sum of $5.5M (Five million five hundred thousand USD) which no other person knows about because this is a situation I have monitored closely with my position in the Bank and having monitored this deposit and yet nobody has showed up as the next of kin since after his death, I have removed his file to my private vault.
The request of a foreigner as the next of Kin in this business is occasioned by the fact that the customer was a foreigner. This is why I have contacted you to render assistance in repatriating the money and properties left behind by this man before they will be confiscated or declared unserviceable by this Bank. With my position in the bank, i am in possession of every information our bank here will need to transfer this fund to you which shows the entire transaction between the deceased and our bank here in relation to this fund deposit.
I want this money to be transferred into a safe account abroad after which we will share the proceeds but I don't know any foreigner, I am only contacting you as a foreigner because this money cannot be approved to a local person here in my country . My constraint is to be able to source a foreign partner who is honest and trustworthy, that will act as a Trustee and willing to assist me in this transaction morally and financially and your share as compensation would be (40%) while (60%) is for me. This transaction is 100% risk free provided you treat it with utmost secrecy and confidentiality as it requires. I guarantee you that the entire transaction will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the law both in your country.
My intention of writing you through email is because i believe it is very confidential and personal. Hoping that you will understand and assist effectively for the success of this transaction and looking forward to hearing from you. Though this approach appears desperate but i can assure you that whatever questions you would need to ask or any other details you need to know regarding this proposal will be adequately answered to give you on a clearer understanding of it so as to arrive at a successful conclusion. Waiting for your prompt response at my email email@example.com
Ms. Jenny Ali.
Auditing & Accounting Department
HONG LEONG BANK -MALAYSIA.