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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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: "Mr. Benjamin Haffer" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 1 Aug 2014 16:27:20 +0300 (EEST)
Subject: Hello! business proposal,
Hello, business proposal,
My name is Mr. Benjamin Haffer, I am a newly promoted Branch Manager of a Bank here in Ghana, West Africa, I got your information during my search through the Internet.
It may interest you to hear that I am a man of PEACE and don't want problems, I only hope we can assist each other. If you don't want this business offer kindly forget it, as I will not contact you again.
I have packaged a financial transaction that will benefit both of us, as the Branch Manager of the Bank, it is my duty to send in a Financial Report to my head office in the capital city Accra at the end of each year.
In the course of the last year 2013 end of the year report, I discovered that my branch in which I am the Manager made excess profit of Twelve Million Six Hundred and Fifty Thousand Dollars [US$12,650,000.00] which my head office are not aware of and will never be aware of. I have since placed this fund in a SUNDRY ACCOUNT.
As an officer of the bank I cannot be directly linked to this money, so this informed my contacting you for us to work together so that you can assist me and receive this fund into your bank account in your country for us to SHARE.
I am offering you 30% of the total fund, while you keep 70% for me in your bank account till I join you in your country for the sharing/investment of my own share of the funds or better still we can go into a joint partnership venture, I will appreciate it very much.
If you accept this proposal, please reply through my private email: email@example.com As soon as I receive your response I will give you more details on how we can achieve it successfully.
Mr. Benjamin Haffer.