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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "MR. MIKE ODIA" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 24 Jun 2016 19:15:10 +0400
Subject: Funds will be transferred to you
This letter might come as a surprise to you especially since we have never met or discuss before. Basically, the message might sound strange but it is factual in reality if only you care to know. The truth is that I should have notified you first through a more confidential means, (even if it's at least to respect your integrity) please accept my humble apologies if I had caught you unawares, I frankly do not mean any harm in passing my message.
I am one of the members of the Special Committee for Budget and Planning of the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources. This committee is principally concerned with contract appraisal and the approval of contract in order of priorities as regards capital projects of the federal executive government of Nigeria with my positions I have successfully secured for my selves the sum of Twenty Seven million five hundred thousand dollars (US$27.5M) the amount
was accumulated from the over invoice. Hence, together with some of the top officials of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the Federal Ministry of Finance.
I plan to transfer this amount of money twenty seven million five hundred thousand dollars (US$20.5M) into an overseas account by awarding a non existing contract from my ministry (NNPC). To this effect I decided to contact you and ask for your assistance. What i need from you is to provide a very vital account in which the funds will be transferred. I will compensate the owner of the account used for this transaction with 45% of the total amount remitted. I shall keep 50% and remaining 5% reserved for taxes. Finally, the confidence and trust reposed on you cannot be over emphasized.
Therefore, you are to keep this deal to yourself confidentially. Calibres of personnel involved are men in government. So cannot effort to lose our respective reputation to our dear country if jeopardize by you. Contact me urgently with private detail information for our easier communication
MR. MIKE ODIA
CHAIRMAN CONTRACT AWARD & MONITORING COMMITTEE