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:
- "hundred thousand american 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)
- ",500,000" (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)
- "00,000.00" (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)
- "abidjan" (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: faith adel <email@example.com>
Reply-To: faith adel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 2014 16:04:52 +0000 (UTC)
Dear nice meeting you, i decide to contact you because i need your urgent help.Â First and foremost, my name is Faith Adelh, I am presently in Cote D' Ivoire since the death of my late father who is Ivorian, while my mother is from Toulouse France, both of them married when my father was residing in Toulouse France though, the marriage did not last long because my mother died when i was only 5 years old.
My father was a successful and wealthy business man who deals on Importation of Aluminum and Iron Steel Company here in the city of Abidjan Cote D' Ivoire before his death on 30th august 2013 as result of diabetes. Now his business has been claimed by his brothers, they don't even care about me as the daughter, but this does not bother me because my father told me in the hospital before he died that he deposited sum of money worth $7,500,000.00 (Seven million, five hundred thousand American dollars) in a bank, which made me his next of kin who shall inherit the money in future. He also warned me to relocate out of this country Cote D' Ivoire because, his brothers are evil and greedy, and they can hurt me because of this money.
My Dear, the reason for contacting you today is to ask for your help to stand behind me as my foreign partner to claim this money from the bank and transfer it to your account so that i will relocate over to your country and settle down in your country and you will also help me to invest that money wisely in a good venture so i can have a great future.
My dear, after the transfer of the money to your account i promise to give you 20% of the total money for all your effort in helping me out of this condition.
Please reply me back so i can give you more details about this fund in the bank.
Allah blessing be upon you for helping me.