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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found 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: "Peter Falohun" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 22 May 2014 00:57:26 -0700
Subject: Please reply if you can be trusted in this deal.
How are you today? Hope all is well. Please be informed that I have decided to contact you for a
fund transfer transaction worth the sum of US $5m usdinto your reliable bank account as the sole
NEXT-OF-KIN to the foreign deceased customer of our bank (an International Billionaire French
Businessman) who was killed with his entire family by PLANE-CRASH in Central England almost 5 years
ago. Since his death occurred, no body have show up as his next of kin for the claim because the
account is untraceable.Upon the investigation I carried out from his records, I found out that his
foreign business consultant who would have trace the account died earlier before the deceased.
Therefore, this is a confidential and sealed deal. For the success of this transaction, you should
apply and act as the only existing NEXT-OF-KIN to the deceased which our bank will replace the
deceased account information through proper documentation in position of your own account. This
transaction is risk-free, it will never harm your good reputation in your society because no one can
trace the account, and on the instant of the transfer of the fund into your account, the chapter of
this transaction will be closed entirely.Note that in a business of this nature, the bank don't want
to know your difference between the deceased country, religion or believe because our bank
inheritance law is against that. So, it is a preference for us achieve this success without any
Please note down that once the fund get transferred into your account, you will take 39% of the
total sum while the rest will be for me as I will arrange myself down to your country to take my
share. I need your urgent response and include the below info:
Please reply if you can be trusted in this deal.
Mr Peter Falohun