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:
- 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)
- "00,000.00" (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)
- "waiting for your urgent response" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs.Calista Bihoun" <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 16 Jun 2022 04:27:36 -0700
Subject: Urgent Response and Maximum Cooperation
I am Mrs Calista Bihoun, a personal Accountant/Executive board of
Directors working with United bank for African Burkina Faso (UBA). 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, we stand to gain
a huge amount between us in a matter of days. Please grant me the benefit
of doubt and hear me out. I need you to signify your interest by replying
to my mail.
Honestly, I have a business transaction worth the sum of (US$8,200,000.00)
Eight Million two hundred thousand United state dollars to transfer to you
through proper documentation in the position of your own Account. Most
importantly, I will need you to promise to keep whatever you learn from me
between us even if you decide not to go along with me. I will make more
details available to you on receipt of a positive response from you. This
transaction is risk-free; please urgently confirm your willingness and
interest to assist in this deal, I am in good faith and with trust waiting
for your Urgent response and maximum cooperation for more details.
Mrs. Calista Bihoun