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:
- 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:
- "necessary legal documents" (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "hundred thousand united state 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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "can i completely trust you?" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "your humble assistance" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- This email message is a orphan scam.
Fraud email example:
From: Shirley Gilbert <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply-To: Shirley Gilbert <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2014 19:26:27 +0900 (JST)
I am Miss Shirley Gilbert and i will want you to be kind with me. I inherrited an important some from my late Father. I wish to request for your assistance in investing this sum in lucrative venture or manufacturing in your country. I have the sum of Five million, Five hundred thousand United State Dollars. USD($5,500,000) to invest in this transaction and I will require your assistance in receiving the fund in your account in your country. This is for the fact that my father made an agreement with thé bank in london where hé deposited thé fund that i must provide à foreign partner that will assist me and i want to run away from this country so that my uncles will not get me to kill, because that has been thier wish so that they will claim all my father's properties as i am talking to you
now i am not in my father's house.
Before his death he gave me all the necessary legal documents to the deposit of the fund in a bank in London, I am 22 years old and a university undergraduate i was schooling in london after the funeral burial of my father my uncle invite me and my father's lawyer to read my father's will, so the lawyer told them that i am next of kins to all my father's properties since that day they are after my life they seas my passport and all the properties here in africa they said that woman have know access to father's property the only thing left for me now is the fund in london and really don't know what to do. Now I want an foreign partner where I can transfer this funds and after the transaction I will come and reside permanently in your country. This is because I have suffered a lot of set backs as a result of incessant political crisis here in Ivory coast. The death of my Father actually
brought sorrow to my life. I also want to invest the funds under
your care because I am ignorant of business world.
I am in a sincere desire of your humble assistance in this regards. Your suggestions and ideas will be highly regarded. Now permit me to ask these few questions:
1. Can you honestly help me from your heart?
2. Can I completely trust you?
3. What percentage of the total amount in question will be good for you after the money is in your account?
Please, consider this and get back to me as soon as possible. Immediately I confirm your willingness, I will send to you my picture and also give you more details about myself and the bank in london were my late Father deposited the fund, so that you can reach them and confirm the existence of the fund as well, because seeing is believing.
I will be waiting for your immediate response.