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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "ALEXANDER M KOFI MENSAH" <email@example.com>
Date: Sun, 18 Mar 2018 11:42:55 +0100
Subject: IINVESTMENT PROPOSAL
ALEXANDER M KOFI MENSAH
DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
GHANA NATIONAL PETROLEUM CORPORATION
MY NAME IS ALEXANDER M. KOFI MENSAH, ONE OF THE DIRECTORS AT THE GHANA
NATIONAL PETROLEUM CORPORATION. I APPRECIATE THIS OPPORTUNITY TO SHARE
WITH YOU MY INTENSIONS TO INVEST $75 MILLION USD INTO LUCRATIVE VENTURES
IN YOUR COUNTRY.
MY SOLICITOR RECOMMENDED YOU AS EXPERIENCED WITH INNOVATIVE PROGRAMS THAT
HAVE SEEN BUSINESSES SUCCEED IN VARIOUS FIELD. HENCE, I AM CONFIDENT THAT
YOU WILL FIND MY PROPOSAL AN OPPOTUNITY TO DEMONSTRATE YOUR COMPETENCE IN
ESTABLISHMENT THAT WILL YIELD POTENTIAL RETURNS FOR OUR EQUAL BENEFITS.
I WILL BE GLAD TO MEET YOU IN YOUR COUNTRY TO EFFECT THIS PROJECT
IMMEDIATELY PLEASE ACKNOWLEDGE MY OFFER SO WE ADVANCE WITH THE TIMELY
ARRANGEMENT TO TRANSFER THE FUNDS TO YOUR COUNTRY.
ALEXANDER M KOFI MENSAH