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:
- "i will like you to " (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "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)
- "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.
Fraud email example:
From: "Sandra" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 22 Aug 2018 16:34:14 +0100
I am writting this with soorow from my heart
My Name is Sandra Anderson, My late father was a Gold miner here in Ghana before he was poisoned to death by his business partner and my mother died of breast Cancer 6 years ago.
Recently as i was cleaning my late father bedroom along the line i found some important documents which my late father used to deposit the sum of five Million and five Hundred Thousand United State Dollars ($5.500,000) and 25kgs of Gold bars in a vault company here in Ghana with my name as my inheritance.
Right now i have been to the vault company to withdraw the money and the Gold bars so
that i can make some investment and take care of my self,
but i was told by the director of the vault company that the company
signed an agreement with my late father that i must provide a foreign partner before they
can be able to release the inheritance to the foreign partner on my behalf for investment, so in this case
the company advised me to seek for a sincere and reliable foreign partner who
will stand on my behalf as my trustee to claim the inheritance.
Actually i am in search of a sincere and reliable person who will help as my foreign partner to transact and
withdraw the money and the Gold bars and invest it over in his/her Country, so i decided to contact you and i believe we can work together for this purpose, i just need you to help me transact with the deposit company as a foreign partner for the purpose of withdrawing, transferring and investing my inheritance, i have all the documents required for this purpose.
Briefly I will disclose more to you as we progress in this transaction,i will like to invest in any lucrative business which i will like you to advise and execute seeing that i
have no experience in business for now and i have the intention of furthering my education in your country if everything works out as planned
However, I shall forward to you the necessary deposit information and
the vault company information on confirming your acceptance to assist me for
the transfer and investment of the money and It is my
intention to compensate you with 20% of the total money or any agreed percentage between both of us for your services and the balance shall be my capital investment, this is the
reason why i decided to contact you.
As soon as i receive your positive response showing your interest i
will put things into action, in the light of the above, I shall
appreciate an urgent message indicating your ability and willingness
to handle this transaction, awaiting your urgent and positive
I am waiting for your urgent respond.