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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
- +447031985960 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
- 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)
- for effective communication. my emails are firstname.lastname@example.org (or) email@example.com my telephone lines are: +44 (Gmail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. John Fulton" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sun, 29 Mar 2015 07:48:41 +0100
Subject: RE: CONFIDENTIAL INVESTMENT AND MANAGEMENT INQUIRY.
RE: CONFIDENTIAL INVESTMENT AND MANAGEMENT INQUIRY.
My dear friend, I am Mr. John Fulton from London here in the United
Kingdom. I am contacting you confidentially, to explain my investment
intentions in your country. I am seeking means of establishing a viable
business as a means of investment that would be capable of generating at
least 10% annual returns on investments (ROI) under a legal process that
would not breach your country's law, and I want you to assist and guide me
and recommend areas where I can invest profitably since I do not know too
well on how this is done there. I want to have you as my partner and
manager and it is going to be a joint business between us after we reach a
joint and honest understanding. I also want to know if we can invest into
your own establishment if your by-law allows foreign direct investment.
I got your contact from your country's online directory and after inquiries
at the trade desk of your high commission here in London, you were
recommended as a reliable, honest and hardworking person. I also made a
careful study of your countryâs steady economic growth,political stability,
investment opportunities, investment incentives and your traditional
hospitality and I am convinced that we will have a successful project. I
am planning to move out of UK with my family and relocate to your country
soon and I want you to help me in finding a good home preferably (a
waterfront six bedroom property) where I and my family would live in. I am
ready, willing and able to invest legally in long term, the sum of
(GBP5.500,000,.00) Five million Five hundred thousand Pounds with you
immediately. I want to know if you can invest and manage the funds
My preferred areas are tourism, agriculture, real estate properties or any
other good business that you can recommend. I want to give you 3% of the
investment fund for your honest guidance and sincere cooperation to
successfully achieve the full potential of the investment capital. Please
take note that I want absolute confidentiality in the handling and
management of this fund. I could forward bank confirmation of funds on
It is true that we have not met before, but I trust that you are an
experienced, reliable and trustworthy person with high standard of honesty
and integrity. I know that trust, as a foundation for business, is earned
and not given away lightly. I also know that almost all international
transactions are done on mutual trust, faith and understanding. I am aware
that some people have abused the internet and email thereby making it
difficult to establish trust and this is regrettable. It is also possible
that you may have received similar letter before but I assure you that my
contact with you is for genuine business relationship that would immensely
benefit both of us and certainly not just a hoax that exist on internet.
Should you not want to work with me, kindly discard this mail and I will
not contact you again and please do not assume that it is a hoax because
this is certainly not a hoax but a genuine business offer.
If you believe we can work together on one accord, please let me know your
thinking immediately, your interest to partner with me, your questions and
your conditions for this project and detail of profitable area(s) for a
study so that I can provide relevant details and how we can proceed to have
a fruitful business relationship. Let me also know if it is possible to get
the money back in the next 8-10 years while the investment is in progress.
Kindly Indicate your direct contact numbers for effective communication. My
emails are email@example.com (or) firstname.lastname@example.org My
telephone lines are: +44 703 198 5960, and +44 703 192 6279. I look
forward to your reply to enable me provide you with more details.. Kind
NB: Please if you received this letter in your spam folder, It might be due
to connection error. Kindly return to your inbox