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:
- "cotonou" (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: losseni cisse <email@example.com>
Reply-To: losseni cisse <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 8 Aug 2013 12:23:48 +0100 (BST)
Subject: Please I Need Your Advice Now!
Good Day My Dear,
Hope you are find Today? Please, my name is Mrs Cabi Ayed, 25 years old with 1 child and my day is very bad here in Cotonou Benin. I am in pains mourning the death of my husband due to the political crisis in Libya Tripoli last year. My late husband was working with a construction company in Tripoli capital of Libya before his untimely death with Gadaffi Opposition protesters.
Please, I need an Honest person that will make me to regain my joy back again, and also need your Advice consigning the properties that my late husband left for me and our son, so that I will not miss manage them, To be open to you, my late husband deposited money here in Cotonou Benin, that's up to $5.500.000USD. That is why I am here up to Today.
Please, I need an Honest person like You, not someone that will do bad to me tomorrow, to help me and save this money into your account, so that when I come over there I will then invest the money into bussines or company with your own direction and Ideas you have in you.
So my Dear this is why I contacted you so that you will help me and save this money into your account in your country. Please my dear, be honest with me, and I am telling you this from the bottom of my heart.
Hope to hear from you soon next,