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:
- "your urgent reply" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
From: BARRISTER FRANK OSEI <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 4 Dec 2013 16:22:10 -0800
Subject: SOLICITING FOR YOUR CO-OPERATION
>From Advocate Frank Osei
Address: 327/2 Kojo Thompson
Rd.Accra the Republic of Ghana
Contact Tel.: +233 230401069
My Respect to you and your family. However I will like to introduce
myself to you before explaining my proposal to you. I am Advocate
Frank Osei, personal attorney to Late Engr.a national of your
country, and a former Director (AIR LIQUIDE GHANA LTD) an Oil
&Petroleum distribution company base in Ghana Republic West Africa,
Here in after shall be referred to as my client. On 31st January
2011,22:53 GMT my client and his wife and three children were involved
in a car accident along Accra-Kumasi express way, unfortunately lost
their lives, my client had an account valued at about ($ 5.7 Million
U.S dollars) deposited in the bank here in Ghana.
I have made several enquiries to locate any of my clients extended
relatives but that proved unsuccessful, I decided to track His last
name over the Internet to locate any of his Family but hence I
contacted you I want you to assist me in Repatriating the money and
property left behind since the Bank has issued me 21 days notice to
provide the next of kin or have the account confiscated. I want the
proceeds of the amount to be paid into your account Since you have the
same last name with my client, then I will come to your country then
you and I will share the money 45% to me and 45% to you and then 10%
to the orphanage homes.
I guarantee that this will be executed under a legitimate arrangement
that will protect you from any breach of law.I need to know if you
will be able to handle this transaction with me before I explain to
you more details.I need your honest cooperation to enable us achieve
this transaction. I guarantee that this will be executed under a
legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the
I will need the following information from you to help us meet this
Your Full Name:------------------------
Your Telephone, and Mobile for Communication
I await your urgent reply then I will give you more details.
Mr. Frank Osei.