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.
Click here to report a problem with this page.
Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "hundred thousand 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)
- "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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "can i completely trust you?" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "your humble assistance" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "abidjan" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Annie Michel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 19 Feb 2018 17:47:52 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Hello Dearest,
My name is Ms. Annie Michel 22 years old. Unfortunately, I'm now an orphan as my mother died when I was 6 years old,my father died of food poisoned. My late father Mr. Gagnon Michel was a very wealthy timber dealers and cocoa merchant in Abidjan, the economic capital of Ivory coast. But unfortunately died of food poison,since his death, things have completely changed and my life became miserable. One of my uncles accepted me in his house. At first, I was ok even though his wife was too hostile. she treats me like a slave in my uncle's house.
Presently she has influenced her husband and life is now like hell to me. Recently I discovered a letter in my uncle's closet and in that letter, I found out that my uncle and two other people planned and poisoned my father. My uncle conspired with my father's business rivals and poisoned my father in order to take over his businesses and inherit his wealth. in that letter they were asking my uncle to give them their own part of the deal,while reading that letter, I had a shock so I fainted and my uncle came in and caught me with the letter. Ever since then my life is at risk. I'm afraid that they might decide to kill me or poison me as they did to my father in order to keep me silent for the evil they did to my father.
For safety, I decided to run away from the house. I'm now in a hidden place very far from the town. My purpose of contacting you is because I need to come to your country secretly so that my uncle will not know my where about. I have here some documents which my father gave to me secretly before he died in the hospital about the secret deposited of $6.500,000.00 (Six Million Five Hundred Thousand United state dollars) he kept with financial company and he used my name as next of kin. I have verified this with the financial company before contacting you.
I shall require you help me to transfer this money to your country for investment after the transfer, I will come to live in your country to continue my education where i stopped. I will give you all information you need after I hear from you. I am in a sincere desire of your humble assistance in this regards. Your suggestions and ideas will be highly regarded. I am willing to offer you 20% for your effort after the successful transfer of this fund to your account oversea.
Now permit me to ask these few questions:
1.Can you honestly help me from your heart?
2. Can I completely trust you?
Please, consider this and get back to me as soon as possible. Immediately i confirm your willingness, i will send you more details on how to proceed further.
Ms. Annie Michel