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:
- "abidjan" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Philippe Kouassi" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 13 Mar 2017 14:27:13 -0000
First of all, let me introduce myself. My name is Mr Philippe Kouassi, I am a staff in one of the banks here in Abidjan Ivory coast working in account Department and I would like to know if you can be at my disposal to strike a perfect/smooth deal in my Bank here. I discovered anonymous fund totaling $25.4M
This fund has been floating in our suspense account for the past years, in an account that belongs to one of our foreign customer who died along with his entire family in September 2007 in a plane crash.Since the notification of his death our bank have been expecting his next of kin to come forward and claim his fund because our bank cannot release it unless somebody applies for it as the next of kin or relative to the Deceased Person as indicated in our banking guidelines and policies but unfortunately I learnt that all his supposed next of kin or relation died along side with him at the plane crash leaving nobody behind for the claims. Therefore, I request for your assistance by presenting you as the next of kin/beneficiary of Deceased Account, so that the fund can be claimed and transfer to your bank account.
The request of a foreigner as the next of kin in this deal is occasioned by the fact that the customer was a foreigner and an Ivorian cannot stand as next of kin to a foreigner. I will agree that 40% of this money will be for you as a foreign partner. In respect to the provision of a foreign bank account where the fund will be transfer and 60 % would be for me. Please let me know if you are interested and also send your direct telephone numbers for discussion of this deal in details.
Mr Philippe Kouassi