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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "hundred thousand united state dollars" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "there is no risk involved" (almost true for the criminal trying to scam you - arrests of online criminals are rare)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
From: Abdul Kareem <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 9 Apr 2022 06:36:31 -0700
Subject: With due respect
Please accept my apologies if this request does not meet your personal
ethics as it is not intended to cause you any embarrassment in
whatever form. I got your contact from internet directory and decided
to contact you for this transaction that is based on trust and your
outstanding, I have an interesting business proposal for you that will
be of immense benefit to both of us, Although this may be hard for you
to believe, but we stand to gain Huge Amount between us in a matter of
weeks, Please grant me the benefit of doubt and hear me out.
My name is Mr. Abdul Kareem, Branch Manager of Emirates NBD Bank
Dubai! Late Mr.Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha Chairman of the King Power, a
Thailand billionaire businessman and the founder owner and chairman of
King Power Duty Free. He was also the owner of England Premier League
football club Leicester City from 2010 until his death in a 27th
October, 2018 helicopter accident made a fixed deposit with my bank in
2015 valued at US$2,800,000 Two Million Eight Hundred Thousand United
State Dollars Only, the due date for this deposit contract was last
30th of September 2018. Sadly Vichai was among the death victims in
27th, Oct 2018 in England helicopter accident that killed all 5 people
in the helicopter, He was in England for Leicester home game which
after the football match where he met his untimely end, My bank
management is yet to know about his death, I knew about it because he
was a friend and I am his Account Officer. Vichai did not mention any
Next of Kin/Heir when the account was opened.
If my Bank Directors happens to know that Vichai is dead and do not
have any Heir, they will take the funds for their personal use, That
is why I am seeking your cooperation to present you as Beneficiary to
the account since you are a foreigner and my bank head quarters will
release the account to you, There is no risk involved, this
transaction will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will
protect us from any breach of law, It is better that we claim the
money than allowing the Bank Directors to take it, they are rich
already. I am not a greedy person, so I am suggesting we share the
funds in this ratio, 50/50%, equal sharing. Let me know your mind on
this and please do treat this information highly confidential.
check web for more info about the helicopter accident:
we shall go over the details once I receive your urgent response.
have a nice weekend. anticipating your communication.
Mr. Abdul Kareem