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:
- 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 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs. Mira" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 30 Nov 2013 10:24:53 -0800
Subject: Re: 29/11/2013
Hello my friend,
I am Mrs. Mira Stokic. I am married to an African who worked with a construction company in Asia for twenty Years before he died in the tsunami disasters.We were married but without children. I'm very old now and in a hospital where I have been undergoing treatment for Cancer of the lungs.
When my late husband was alive, he deposited the sum of $9.5M. (Nine Million, Five Hundred Thousand U.S.Dollars) with a finance house in Benin Republic.
I want to entrust this fund to you so that you will use 55% of this money for charity purposes and use the remaining 45% for yourself.
As soon as I receive your reply I will give you the details and also the contact of my family lawyer so that he can guide you to receive the fund. I have given the finance house instruction about the transfer.
You should include the following information when replying:
1) Your full name and contact address.
2) Your direct telephone number.
3) An assurance that you will use this fund as I instructed above.
4) Your age and occupation.
God bless you.