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:
- "million british pounds" (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: "Lloyds Finance Ltd London" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 24 Dec 2021 23:27:53 +0100
Subject: Beneficiary from Lloyds Finance Ltd
I am Mr.Larry Williams, the head of audits at Lloyds Finance Ltd London, United Kingdom. During a routine audit check last month, I discovered a dormant
investment account which was opened in 1990 belonging to a foreigner who died on-board the crashed Egypt Air Flight 990
(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EgyptAir_Flight_990) in 1999.Our records show that
every effort made by our company to track any member of his family or any one as the next of kin has since failed because the
deceased died leaving no heir or a will in his file. I have decided to contact in a bid to locate a matured and trustworthy partner to stand as the next of kin.
I intend to facilitate the transfer of this sum of £12.5Million British Pounds in the Investment Deposit to a safe account overseas. I am therefore
proposing that you confidentially partner with me by standing as the next of kin and provide an existing account or set up a new one that will serve thepurpose of receiving this fund. For your assistance in this venture, I am ready to
part with a good percentage of the entire funds. After going through the deceased person's records filed in our office, I discovered that no one has
operated this account since 1999 till date and he died without a heir; no one has come forward for this claim, hence the money has been floating.
The information I have on this account is privileged and confidential as no other person has access to it. If we do not remit this money urgently, it
would be forfeited and subsequently converted to state funds which may benefit only the shareholders of our company. This money can be approved to you legally
and with all the necessary documentary approvals in your name. However, you would be required to show some proof of claim which I will provide you with and
also guide you on how to make your applications.
Please do give me a response through my private email so that I can send you detailed information on the modalities of my proposition. I completely
trust you to keep this proposition absolutely confidential. I look forward to
your prompt response.