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 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (AOL; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: William Liang <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 30 Nov 2021 14:20:19 +0100
Subject: Investment Partnership Proposal
I am contacting you because we am seeking for a professional with whom
we can be involved in partnership overseas, who also has the ability
to manage an investment portfolio in your country. I am representing a
group of prospective investors from China.
The proposed investment profile will be large in volume and scale, but
because of the restrictive employment regulations in China, I cannot
do this while under state employment, hence this proposal.
My primary preference is for someone from your country with your
professional background, hence this proposal to you. I like to know if
you are disposed to that kind of engagement, so that we may open
further conversation along that line and provide you additional
The civil service and employment regulations here prohibit me from
getting involved in private oversea business, while under government
or corporate employment, hence this proposal to you, in view of your
If you indicate interest, I can send you my ID'S, so you can have a
better knowledge of who you are dealing with, and I can communicate
further details of the proposal to you. Reply me via this Email
I look forward to your response if this appeals to you.