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:
- "is 100% risk free" (almost true for the criminal trying to scam you - arrests of online criminals are rare)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Raymond and Joshua law Firm." <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 8 Oct 2020 22:22:28 +0100
Subject: Please Read To Understand The Message Contents And Your Respond Is Important
My name is Hunt Ford; I am a partner at Raymond and Joshua law Firm.
Firstly, I must solicit your confidence in this transaction; this is by
virtue of its nature as being utterly confidential. Though I know that a
transaction of this magnitude will make any one apprehensive and worried,
but I am assuring you that all will be well at the end of the day. I
decided to contact you during my visit to Turkey, for three days seminar.
There is an unclaimed âpermanent life insurance policyâ insured for Six
Million Nine Hundred Seventy Thousand Dollars ($6,970.000.00) with a top
Life Insurance Company in Canada. The policy holder was one of our clients,
Who worked with Energy Company in Toronto Canada, She died in an accident
at Montreal Quebec, Six years ago. Since her death no one has come forward
for the claim and all our efforts to locate her relatives in United States
have proved unsuccessful. The insurance company code stipulates that
insured permanent policies" not claimed must be turned over to the
abandoned property division of the state after seven years.
Therefore, I ask for your consent to be in partnership with me for the
claim of this policy benefit, in view of the fact that you share the same
last name with the deceased. If you permit me to add your name to the
policy, all proceeds will be processed on your behalf. I wish to point out
that I want 10% of this money to be shared among charity organizations
while the remaining 90% will be shared between us. This is 100% risk free;
I do have all necessary documentation to expedite the process in a highly
professional and confidential manner. I will provide all the relevant
documents to substantiate your claim as the beneficiary. This claim
requires a high level of confidentiality and it may take up to thirty (30)
business days, from the date of receipt of your consent.
Your earliest response to this matter would be highly appreciated.