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:
- "very confidential" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Ms Zeinab Diallo" <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 04 Apr 2018 00:40:00 +0100
Subject: RE: Greetings from Ms Zeinab Diallo
I have the feeling that this piece of mail will reach you in a perfect state of mind and in a better healthy condition. Please accept my apology if my mode of contacting you will in any way offend you.I am compelled to contact you via this medium for obvious reasons which you will understand when we discuss details of my proposition
My name is Ms Zeinab Diallo,Daughter of late General Souleymane Kelefa Diallo the former Guinea's military chief,who passed away on 11/02/2013,I have something very confidential to discuss with you in my next mail and will as well send you my pictures.
Please get back to me as you read this mail,as no much time left on my side.Like as i said above,i will tell you more in my next mail.Please Reply me immediately through my email address.
Ms Zeinab Diallo