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.
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
Fraud email example:
From: "Barr Richard Thomas" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 23 Apr 2010 19:08:59 +0600 (YEKST)
Subject: NOTIFICATION OF BEQUEST
NOTIFICATION OF BEQUEST
My name is Richard Thomas (ESQ). I am the Family Attorney to the great
Atlanta Physician and Philanthropists late Mr.G.Brumley. On behalf of the
Trustees and Executor of the Estate of Late George Brumley, I wish to
notify you that late George Brumley made you one of the beneficiaries of
his estate. He left the sum of Seventeen Million One Hundred Thousand
Dollars (USD$17,100.000.00) to you. This may sound strange and
unbelievable to you,but it is real and true.
Late Mr. Brumley and all his family were among the victims that died in a
charter plane crash on Mount Kenya . The flight crashed into the
snow-capped,16,355-foot Lenana Peak on Mount Kenya destroying the entire
plane and killing passengers on board. Late George Brumley died on the
month of July 2003 at the age of 68. You can see details of his death in
the CNN link below:
He was a widely traveled man and devoted most of his time and wealth to
charity and humanitarian work. His great philanthropist works is well
known and recorded all over the world. He must have been in contact with
you in the past or you were nominated to him in his vision to expand the
Charity works. Simply put, he was a very dedicated Sufis and Christian who
loved to give out. His great philanthropy earned him numerous awards
during his life time. In dedicating this funds to you and other
beneficiaries, he instructed that you are to use part of the funds to
promote his legacy through activities that aims to help the old, poor,
needy and disabled in the society. Late Brumleys' legacy is the love of
Please If I reach you as I am hopeful, endeavor to get back to me as soon
as possible so we can start processing the release of the funds to you.
You are to reply me immediately providing the following information:
1.Your Full names.
2.Valid Contact address.
3.Contact Telephone, cell phone and fax numbers.
4.Your personal or company's Profile.
5. Your Marital Status.
The WILL DOCUMENT will be send to you as soon as you send to me the above
information to claim your inheritance.
Richard Thomas (ESQ).