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:
- "million united states 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)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Donald Lam Yin" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 7 Feb 2020 08:14:04 -0800
Subject: Attention: Treat This Matter As Urgent !!
I am Mr Donald :Lam Yin; I work as a Business Relationship Manager with the Nanyang Commercial Bank in Hong Kong China. I have used the opportunity of a friend travelling through England to send this letter to you for security reasons as I wanted to be sure my letter was not intercepted here in Hong Kong. I have decided to contact you regarding the estate of a deceased client with a similar last name and an investment placed under our banks management many years ago.
I would respectfully request that you keep the contents of this mail confidential and respect the integrity of the information you come by as a result of this mail. I contact you independently and no one is informed of this communication. In 2010 the deceased; Mr Roger Speck came to our bank to engage in business discussions with our private banking division. He informed us that he had a financial portfolio of USD $22,350,000 million (Twenty Two Million Three Hundred and Fifty Thousand United States dollars) which he wished to have us invest on his behalf.
Based on my advice, we spun the money around various opportunities and made attractive margins for our first months of operation, the accrued profit and interest stood at this point at over $1.8 million United States Dollars. In mid-2012, he instructed that the principal sum ($22,350,000 Million) be liquidated because he needed to make an urgent
investment requiring cash payments in Hong Kong. We got in touch with a specialist bank in Hong Kong Shanghai Commercial Bank (SCB) who agreed to receive this money for a fee and make funds available to Mr Speck. However Shanghai Commercial Bank got in touch with us last year that this money has not been claimed. On further inquiries we found out that Mr Speck was involved in an accident in Mainland China, which means he
died intestate. He has no next of kin and the reason I am writing you is because you are namesakes.
What I propose is that since I have exclusive access to his file, you will be made the beneficiary of these funds. My bank will contact you informing you that money has been willed to you. On verification, which will be the details I make available to my bank, my bank will instruct SCB to make payments to you. You do not have to have known him. I know this might be a bit heavy for you but please trust me on this. For all your troubles I propose that we split the money in half. In the banking circle this happens every time. The other option is that the money will revert back to the state. Nobody is getting hurt; this is a lifetime opportunity for us. I would want us to keep communication for now strictly by the above Email, Telephone and Fax numbers.
Please, again, note I am a family man; I have a wife and children. I send you this mail not without a measure of fear as to the consequences, but I know within me that nothing ventured is nothing gained and that success and riches never come easy or on a platter of gold. This is the one truth I have learned from my private banking clients. Do not betray
my confidence. If we can be of one accord, we should act swiftly on this. Please get back to me immediately via the telephone, fax number or email address above and let me know if you intend to assist or not. If you also do not want to be involved kindly let me know so I would sever further communication with you.
I await your response.
Donald Lam Yin