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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- 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 (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Ronald Evergreen" <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 08 Apr 2022 20:46:11 -0700
Subject: Hello There..
This email is strictly confidential and if receiving it does not please you, kindly delete it and speak to nobody about it please to avoid complication. For more proof about it kindly click on the BBC News website below and read carefully to confirm every history about the death of Mr. John Shumejda.
My name is Mr. Ronald Evergreen, I work with a well-known financial house (BANK) here in London and I am the personal account officer to the late Mr. John Shumejda who died in a plane crash in the year 2002 when a private jet crashed during take-off from Birmingham Airport. I had a private meeting with My late client the same day before the crash and this gentleman had plans of investing over GBP 10 Million Great British Pounds sterling into some venture in Dubai and making me the manager of that venture upon my retirement in some months time. Mr. John Shumejda is a very close friend and big client, we believe so much in him and what I advise him. I was shocked and I almost died when I heard of his sudden death after some hours when both of us spoke together.
A few months ago I received a MEMO from my bank as his account officer where I was told that since the death of Mr. John Shumejda in 2002, no one has ever come forth as his next of kin to make an inquiry of his deposit with the Bank, therefore, I have been mandated to search for his next of kin and present to the bank between now and end of this month otherwise his deposited funds will be canceled and send to the UK Government Treasury Account for confiscation. And all effort to locate any of his family members has proven unfruitful and as far as I know, Mr. Shumejda has no next of kin because he has no children and his wife also died a few years after the death of her husband because she could not bear the pains.
Therefore, I am contacting you to stand as my foreign partner to claim as next of kin to late Mr. John Shumejda so that the bank can release his deposit amounting to the sum of GBP 55,78 Million Great British Pounds sterling in your favor. And once the money is released into your bank account, we will share the total sum via the following ratio 45% for you as my trusted partner, 55% for me as the initiator and founder of the deal. I want to assure you that this transaction is 100% hitch-free as I have everything planned out already, all you need to do is to follow my instructions as I am going to present you before the bank management. If you are willing to work with me and you can be trusted, kindly send the following information to enable me to submit your application file to the bank immediately because we have from now till this month end to move these funds out of the bank.
COUNTRY OF RESIDENT:
PRIVATE PHONE NUMBER:
The time given to me by the bank is almost up and I cannot let them confiscate the account as I have told that once I fail to provide his next of kin, the Bank will turn some part of the money into the government account and the rest will be shared among the board of directors of the bank. I believe that this is my chance and a great opportunity to make the most of what life has given to me and whoever will stand as next of kin to claim the funds, like said before, do not reply to me if you have no intention to follow me through with this transaction.
I had to make a trip to convince my directors that I had gone in search of the next of kin to Mr. John Shumejda. Your urgent response is needed with your details, God Bless you and your family. Chat me via WhatsApp on:+1-413-278-0914 or write to me on: firstname.lastname@example.org and we can talk more about this.
Mr. Ronald Evergreen,