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.
- This email lists free webmail addresses. Use of such addresses is typical for scams. Lotteries, banks and any but the smallest of companies do not normally use such addresses. Criminals use them to anonymously send and receive email at Internet cafes.
- email@example.com (Hotmail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
- you can email me on e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org for further details, terms and agreement. sincerely (Hotmail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: Louise Zheng <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 05 Sep 2018 12:34:56 +0200
Subject: important information
Dear Prospective Partner,
I am contacting you regarding transaction linked with Mr. Chen
Shui-bian the former President of Taiwan. My name is Louise Zheng, my
friend Mr. Chen Shui-bian has presented a subtle offer which will need
the help of a partner like you to complete successfully. Mr. Chen
Shui-bian is in a difficult situation and he must immediately relocate
certain sums of money. More so, this must be done in such a way that
it must not be tied to Mr. Chen Shui-bian. The sum is currently
deposited in the name of an existing legal entity. Your role will be to:
. Act as the original beneficiary of the funds.
. Receive the funds into a business/private bank account.
. Invest/Manage the funds.
. Value of funds: (US) $49 Million.
Everything will be done legally to ensure the rights to the funds are
transferred to you. If you agree to partner with Mr. Chen Shui-bian,
he will compensate you with 20% of the total sum for your role as the
beneficiary partner to the funds. Should you prefer I re-contact you
with more express facts, you can send me your:
 Full Names:
 Personal Profile:
 Daytime Telephone No:
Be advised to visit the following link to be better acquainted with
Mr. Chen Shui-bian's current profile and personality.
You can email me on E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org for further
details, terms and agreement.