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:
- "i will like you to " (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "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 orphan scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Miss Anne Dama" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 5 Nov 2015 10:42:26 -0200
Miss Anne Dama
My name is Anne Dama from Abidjan Ivory Coast and I will be 18 years old on the 22nd of Novermber.My father Doctor Smith Dama died in March 2014 after being involved in a motor accident. Before my father died, my mother had earlier died as a result of Diabetes.Before my father died in the hospital while taking treatment, he told me that there is Four million seven hundred thousand united states dollars(US4,700,000.00) he has in a bank here in Abidjan Cote D'Ivoire.
He said that the money was meant for establishing his business in Abidjan - Ivory Coast. Though, according to my father he deposited the money in his own name and mentioned me in the documents as the next of kin .Before his death he advised me to seek for a trust worthy person abroad who will help me invest and manage this money for me until i am capable to handle it myself.I have succeeded in locating the bank in Abidjan and also confirmed the money is in the account.
But the bank said from the agreement my father has with them that i can only claim the money when i am upto 25 years. And if I am not upto that age, i should present a guardian who will help me in recieving the money and for investment purposes in his or her country. Now I am seeking for your assistance to help me transfer out this money from this bank he deposited it to your account so that you can be able to manage and invest it in any good business in your country and also help me to move out from here so that I can continue my education which stopped since my parents death.
I will be Waiting anxiously to hear from you so that we can discuss how you can assist me on this as my guardian since it is the only condition that the bank said this my inheritance can be release to me at this my present age or i can wait until i am upto 25 years and above. Thanks for your kind attention and i will appreciate to receive your reply to know if you will be able to help me stand as my guardian for my inheritance be release to me through your kind help.Please i am willing to give you 20% from the inheritance for standing as my guardian and also know that you are going to manage it for me .Please i will like you to send this information to me which will be what i will be presenting to the bank when i hear from you,Your name and your address,
Thanks and God Bless
Miss Anne Dama