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: Mr Samad Abdul <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 16 Nov 2021 06:14:05 -0800
Subject: Waiting to hear from you
Dear Sir/ Madam,
Inquiry For Investment In Your Country
My name is Mr. Ali Tarhouni, from Tripoli- Libya, USD$22.5Million,I
am former Minister for Oil and Finance on the National Transitional
Council, but presently I'm here in Burkina Faso (West Africa). Due to
the crises that going on in my country.
Please I'm consulting you for my personal investment plan which I
would like to discuss with you and know the possibility of how we can
Co-operate and work together to carry it out as business partner;
which I believe it will be beneficial to both parties if handled with
If you have idea of any business in your country where we can invest
the sum of USD$22.5Million, kindly reply me urgently and we will
discuss on how to achieve this effectively.
However, due to the crises in my country Libya, I find it necessary
to diversify my investments to outside my country to safe guard
against the future of my family. For your kind assistant, I'm willing
to offer you the 20% of the total amount for your assistance, while
the balance shall be my capital investment in your country when we
I am expecting to read from you soon,