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:
- "the consignment" (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)
- "consignment " (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)
- "hundred thousand united states 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)
- "abidjan" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- "god fearing " (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- "remain blessed" (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- This email message is a "dying widow" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: Mrs Rose <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 14 Sep 2010 04:16:30 -0700 (PDT)
Mrs Rose Benson,
Address: 12 Bp 1046 Abidjan,
am Mrs Rose Benson.I am a deaf woman from Israel but now undergoing
medical treatment in Abidjan the capital city of Ivory Coast. I am
married to late Mr Benson Joe, who worked with Israeli Embassy in Ivory
Coast for Eleven years before he died in the year 2008, after a brief
illness that lasted for only Ten days. We were married for Eighteen
years without any child.
After the death of my husband i
vowed to use our wealth for the down trodden and the less privileged in
our society. Recently, My Doctor told me that I may not last for the
next seven months due to cancer problem, though what disturbs me most
is my stroke and deaf problem. Haven known my condition i decided to
Serve God with our wealth.
late husband was alive we kept the sum of ($6.4 Million U.S.
Dollars)six million four hundred thousand united states dollars Having
known my condition I decided to Give out this fund to a church or an
individual or better still a God fearing person who will utilize this
fund the way I am going to instruct here in.
I want an
individual that will use this fund to provide succor to the poor and
indigent persons, orphanages, widows around him or her and Schools
etc. As soon as I receive your response I shall give you the contact
where the consignment box that contain the money was deposited also
issue you the documents that will prove you the present beneficiary of
Any delay in your reply will give me room in
searching for an individual for this same purpose, always be prayerful
all through your life. Please assure me that you will act accordingly
as I Stated herein. Hope to receive your reply soon.
Thanks and Remain Blessed.
Mrs Rose Benson Joe.