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.
- 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:
- "the consignment" (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)
- "consignment " (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)
- "million 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)
- "united state of america" (this email uses bad English)
- "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.
- 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: Consult Gold <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply-To: Consult Gold <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 8 Aug 2013 22:39:30 +0800 (SGT)
Subject: URGENT PROPOSALS.
Dear Sir/ Mrs.
seeking for capable companies, Individuals or personnel who has the ability and
capabilities to assist us in exporting 212 Kilos of gold as well the
twenty seven million dollars (27.3million usd ) lodged under a private
firm in Benin, Cotonou.
We are citizen of Mali, Bamako, as such due to
the current war going on in Mali, I and my mother have
evacuated to Benin, Cotonou, where we are currently lodge and kept our
treasures under a safe firm.
We are seeking for honest person, as our desire
is to leave Africa for now and settle as second-class citizen as well our funds
invested in profiting business.
Sir/ Mrs. do understand that the fund was
declared as gold bars alongside with the stated fund, on this basic fact the
goods which has been lodged for over eight months when the terrorist took over
the northern part of Mali, subjecting us to terrorist laws that led to our
Sir, we have been paying monthly deposit fee of
seven thousand united state of American dollars (5.000
usd) to the security company for the safe keeping since last august 2012 but
for the past 3months now we are unable to pay and we can continue paying this
demurrages, we are now owning the security firm in Benin, the sum of( fiften thousand united states American
dollars )(15,000.00 USD), as such the fund which must to be paid before the
goods are release to us for exportations.
We are seeking for companies or parties who can
assist us to offset this payment and dislodge the gold which has the fund
inside, which the interested parties must open up an account under his name and
transfer the fund bit by bit to his account outside Africa as well export the
gold using the funds we have or that will be dislodged from the company.
I and my mother have decided that 15% of the total
money and the gold will be given to the person that can assist us to
offset this payment and claim the consignment from the security firm,40% will
be for a joint business venture that we will enter into with you and the other
40%will be for me and my family which also we will invest in your country into
a profiting business under your supervision the remaining 5% will be mapped out
for for all expenses that we
may incurred during the transaction.
If you are willing and interested to assist us reply
us through my email address (firstname.lastname@example.org) we also need your private
phone number for easy communication.
I will send to you all the documents as regards to
this deposit as soon as I hear from you
Mrs. Awa SULEMAN? (Mother)
Ali samba SULEMAN (son)