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:
- "u.k " (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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: "Ridha Khalil" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 12 Apr 2016 23:57:43 +0800
Subject: TRUST WISH FROM TUNISIA 11/04/16.
I have a proposal for you, this however is not mandatory nor will I in any manner compel you to honor against your will.I am Ridha Khalil a former executive director
with Arab Tunisian Bank here in Tunis; I retired 1 year 7 months ago after putting in 28 years of meticulous service. During my days with Arab Tunisian Bank, I was the
personal account officer and one of the financial advisers to Zine Al-Abidine Ben Ali the past Tunisian President in self exile at Saudi Arabia. During his trying
period, he instructed me to move all his investment in my care which consists of US$88M and 367KG of gold out of the Gulf States for safe keeping; and that I
successfully did by moving US$52M to London United Kingdom, US$36M to Malaysia and the 367KG of gold to Brussels Belgium as an anonymous deposits, so that the funds
will in no way be traced to him. He has instructed me to find an investor who would stand as the anonymous depositor of the fund and gold; and claim it for further
Consequent upon the above, my proposal is that I would like you as a foreigner to stand in as the anonymous depositor of this fund and gold that I have successfully
moved to Europe and provide an account overseas where this said fund will be transferred into. It is a careful network and my voluntary retirement from the Arab
Tunisian Bank is to ensure a hitch-free operation as all modalities for you to stand as beneficiary and owner of the deposits has been perfected by me. Mr. Zine al-
Abidine Ben Ali will be offering you 20% of the total investment if you can be the investor and claim this deposits in U.K and Belgium as the anonymous depositor.
Now my questions are:-
1. Can you handle this transaction?
2. Can I give you this trust?
Consider this and get back to me as soon as possible, so that I can give you more details regarding this transaction.
Finally, it is my humble request that the information as contained herein be accorded the necessary attention, urgency as well as the secrecy it deserves.
I Expect your urgent response if you can handle this project.