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 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)
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
- 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: willam sammy <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply-To: willam sammy <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 20 Jan 2015 09:29:41 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Dear friend,
How are you today? Please don't be offended if this message comes to you, as I ought to have sought your consent and approval to email it to you. I acted like I did because of the importance and urgency of this business. Whichever way you can look at it, let you respond quickly, negatively or positively.
I counsel willamsammy, a lawyer and I'm a personal lawyer to the late Mr. Alex, a citizen of your country, who used to work with Shell development company in Lome, Benin. He used to be my client on January 21, 2010 year with his entire family, his wife and their only daughter were involved in a car accident Nouvissi express road. All of the occupants of the vehicle unfortunately lost their lives. Since then I have made several enquiries to your embassy here to locate any of my clients extended relatives, but all were unsuccessful.
This, I am looking for consent to present you as the next of kin of my late client because you are a foreigner and also share the same last name with him. I have contacted you to assist me in repartrating Fund in the United States $ 27 million left behind by my client before it gets confisicated or declared unserviceable by the bank where they were deposited on this huge amount.Â
Said the Bank has issued me a notice the next of kin or have his account confisicated within the next twenty one official working days is three weeks. Since I have been unsuccesfull in locating the relatives for over 5 years now, I seek the consent to present you as the next of kin of deceased since you have the same last name with him so that the account can be paid to you as a bonafide beneficiary.
All I require from you is honest cooperation will help us see this transaction through. I guarantee that this will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the law. Having received a positive response, we will discuss the sharing ratio and modalities for transfer.
I have all the necessary information and legal documents needed to back up this claim.Â Â Everything you need is ready, the alien will be honest, reliable and transparent, both in business and in spirit with his or her loyal cooperation will enable us see this transaction through. Once again, I guarantee that this will be done in accordance with the legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the law.
You must send me your info so that I'll be using it to prepare an application letter which you will send to the Bank and request for funds transfer to your late brother to your account.Your full name-------------------------Your country and address-----------Regards the occupation--------------YourÂ Â email address-------------------yourÂ Â age---------------------------------Your telephone number for easy communication-------
Please contact me via my email address (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information.
You can contact me on my private cell phone (+22999012663) anytime you want.I have all the documents that will protect you from any breech of the law here, and in your country.
I am waiting for a positive response from you.I'm possitive response from you.
Barrister William Sammy [TC]