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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "will come to you as a surprise" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "million united state 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)
- "united state dollar" (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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: Suzanboni Boni <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 9 Jan 2018 04:09:23 -0500
Subject: MY GOD BLESS YOU.
it is obvious that this proposal will come to you as a surprise. This is because we have not met before but I am inspired to contact you with this email following the huge fund transfer opportunity that
will be of mutual benefit to the two of us.
However, I am Mrs. Suzan Boni Adams, From the West side of Burkina Faso in West Africa, I lost my late Husband on 23 may 2017, before the death of my late husband he deposited the sum of 3Million United State Dollars($3,000.000.00) in my name as the next of Kin to the said fund.
Please I want you to help me and my only daughter to transfer this fund to your bank account and bring us to stay in your country, I took this decision because the brothers and the family of my late husband has vow to kill us and claim everything that belongs to my late husband, they told me that why they are doing this is because I did not bear a male child to my late husband who will replace him according to our tradition.
As I am taking to you now they have taking over almost all the building properties that belong to my late husband,I am willing to offer you 30pecent of the total fund for your assistance to help us transfer this fund to your account and bring us to stay with you in your country provided that you are going to be honest to me, and the remaining 70pecent of the fund will be invest into any profitable business in your country and will be manage by you and me.
I only want to secure the future of my daughter because she is all that I have,
Please reply me through my private email address.
This is my private email address, firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs. Suzan Boni.