The 419 scam is a kind of fraud where a person
receives an unsolicited communication (usually email, but
often fax or letter) from a person concerning a (usually)
Nigerian (or other third-world) business opportunity. The
name derives from the pertinent section (419) of the Nigerian
Criminal Code that criminalizes this plan. This scam is also
called as the “Advance Fee Fraud”,”419 Fraud”,”
Nigerian scam” and “The Nigerian Connection”.
Many people around the world are receiving
Nigerian letters and are becoming the victims of spam. So
it is essential to make general public aware of the problem
so that do not become victims of a possible scam.
How to Identify Email scam:
or email is marked “urgent”,” top secret”
or “confidential and stress you to act immediately.
nature of the transaction is stressed.
to share or transfer millions of dollars to you for your help
may have strong ties with the Nigerian Government or the Central
Bank of Nigeria to your confidence.
the proposal may contain improbable situation, i.e. overpaid
millions on a contract, royal money or assets frozen by a
foreign government etc.
personal information from you, i.e. your full name, bank account
information and routing numbers, Nigerian Spam or business telephone
and facsimile numbers, or a copy of your letterhead.
fees are continuously requested in order to further the transaction.
letters will specify that the transaction is 100% risk-free.
How to file a complaint:
If you receive such a mail, do not respond
to the 419 solicitation and report to your own National Law
Enforcement Agency and Nation Foreign Office. Then File a
complaint with the Nigerian Embassy or High commission in
your nation and also file a complaint with the Central Bank
of Nigeria via email. If there is any loss, then file a complaint
to the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
If the spammers communicate via email, then
write their email provider at their “abuse” address
(email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org etc) and include the message
along with its header and ask that the account be shut down.
You may also file complaints with watchdog
type services like Spamcop to try and get the 419ers email
accounts shut off by whatever ISP they are using - Spamcop
and other services like it will parse the headers of the 419
email and try to see through forged information etc. to get
back to the actual origin of the 419 email, which is often
useful in these matters. Always include the message’s
full header information, because this will be helpful in tracking
the message’s point of origin.
If you are entering into a business transaction with foreigners,
the following preventive measures can be taken to lessen the
risk of becoming victims of an advancing fee fraud.
the credentials of the person or business with the relevant
delegation, to see whether or not he person operates the valid
business or that the business does exist.
give blank letterheads of invoices to the other party.
pay anything in advance unless you absolutely receive that
goods or services.
that your travel documents are in order.