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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "hundred thousand united states 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)
- "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)
- "high court" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Charles Juntikka." <SATIS@GOZLUKSATISMERKEZI.COM>
Date: Fri, 20 May 2016 05.58.55 +0200
Subject: THIS IS FOR YOUR ATTENTION.
Charles Juntikka & Associates, LLP (CJA Law
30 Vesey Street, Suite 100
New York, NY 10007
Phone : +19406181545
THIS IS FOR YOUR ATTENTION.
I wish to notify you again that your family name were listed as a
beneficiary to the total sum of US$4,600,000.00 Million (Four Million
Six Hundred Thousand United States Dollars) in the codicil and last
testament of the deceased. (Name now withheld since this is our second
letter to you).
I contacted you because you bear the surname identity and therefore
can present you as the beneficiary to the inheritance. We therefore
reckoned that you could receive these funds as you are qualified by
your name identity. All the legal papers will be processed in your
In your acceptance of this deal, we request that you kindly forward to
us your letter of acceptance; your current telephone and fax numbers
and a forwarding address to enable us file necessary documents at the
high court probate division for the release of this sum of money.
Mr. Charles Juntikka.