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.
Click here to report a problem with this page.
Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "million 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)
- This email message is a "dying widow" 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.
- email@example.com (AOL; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: Mrs kitara patterson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 19 Jul 2010 12:35:25 +0200
Subject: my belovedmy will
Compliments of the day to you ! By this e-mail, I do sincerely
apologize for my intrusion of your privacy. However, I have a serious concern
with which I believe you might be of help and for this reason, I can not
but reach out to someone . My name as given above is Mrs Kitara Patterson a
nationality of United Kingdom. I am married to Mr Edward Patterson who worked
with British embassy in Cairo, Egypt for nine years before he
died in the plane crash On 31st of July 2000 with other passengers
aboard as you can confirm it yourself through this web site.
We were dedicated Christians and decided to serve mankind to the
best of our ability. Since his death, I have lived with the memories,
fighting effortlessly to lead a normal life but all to no avail. I
suffered mentally and psychologically and shortly was diagnosed of Cancer. I
lived with the scourge praying earnestly for divine intervention. Just a
month ago,the doctor informed me that I have just about three months more to
I was not shocked. I accepted the news in good fate. Brethren, it is
in this regard that I write to you, having sourced your address from a
database in my late husband's internet dozier after fervent prayers.
I was brought up from a motherless babies home was married to my late husband for twenty
years without a child ,my husband died in a fatal plane crash. Before his death we were true
believers. Since his death I decided not to re-marry, Before the death of my husband,
he deposited the sum of 10 million dollars with santander bank of which I am he beneficiary.
Presently, this money is still with them and the management just wrote me as the true owner
to come forward to receive the money for keeping it so long or rather issue a letter of
authorization to somebody to receive it on my behalf since I can not come over because of my illness or they get it confiscated..
I have wholeheartedly decided to donate the entirety of this fund
to any devoted believer or organization and to achieve this, I need an
individual that will utilize this funds adherent for these purposes since
i was unable to give birth and having no single child and my late husband
relatives has plundered so much of this wealth and i have lost trust in them: i want this funds to be used for
1: For the sick, less-privileged and destitute
2: For the Widows and the motherless babies e.t.c.
3: orphanages, Research centers and widows propagating
These are the wishes of a dying woman. They are the desires of my
heart, hence my decision as I do not have a child to take over my
inheritance. Please, understand that I am not doing this because of fear of death
as I am certain where my place already is. At this point, friends, well
wishers, and my husbands relatives are all clambered around me as I
sojourn in my hospital bed and are unaware of my plight, hence I will not
be able to make an open conversation.
All I need from you is Truthfulness, Honesty and Sincerity assuring me
that you can in all honesty and obedience utilize the funds for the
purpose with which it is meant. In any a case, a quick response from you
will be highly appreciated as I am already on a count-down and may not
have ample time to finalize the procedures. Any delay in response may
compel me to source for other measures or perhaps choose the alternative
which I will not be happy to. Please, do not see this as a strange
possibility or an unbelievable opportunity to make wealth, rather see this
as a rare chance to assist the less privileged in truth and in spirit
with a substance.
I await your immediate response through my private email address ( email@example.com)
Thank You and Bless you abundantly.