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 "dying widow" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs. Ghayth Faiza" <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 9 Jul 2010 21:54:22 -0000 (UTC)
MRS. GHAYTH FAIZA.
23, Hawley Crescent,
Camden Town, London,
NW1 8NP, England.
Here writes Mrs. Ghayth Faiza, suffering from cancerous ailment. I am
married to Watson Ghayth an Arabian who is dead. My husband was into
private practice all his life before his death. Our life together as man
and wife lasted for three decades without a child. My husband died after a
protracted illness. My husband and I made a vow to uplift the down-trodden
and the less-privileged individuals as he had passion for persons who can
not help themselves due to physical disability or financial predicament. I
can adduce this to the fact that he needed a Child from this relationship,
which never came.
When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of Two Million Great
Britain Pound Sterling which were derived from his vast estates and
investment in capital market with his bank here in UK. Presently, this
money is still with the Bank. Recently, my Doctor told me that I have
limited days to live due to the cancerous problems I am suffering from.
Though what bothers me most is the stroke that I have in addition to the
cancer. With this hard reality that has befallen my family and I, I have
decided to donate this fund to you and want you to use this gift which
comes from my husbands effort to fund the upkeep of widows, widowers,
orphans, destitute, the down-trodden, physically challenged children,
barren-women and persons who prove to be genuinely handicapped
It is often said that blessed is the hand that giveth. I took this
decision because I do not have any child that will inherit this money and
my husband's relatives are bourgeois and very wealthy persons and I do not
want my husband's hard earned money to be misused or invested into ill
perceived ventures. I do not want a situation where this money will be
used in an ungodly manner, hence the reason for taking this bold decision.
I am not afraid of death hence I know where I am going. I know that I am
going to be with the Almighty when I eventually pass on.
The Almighty will fight my case and I shall hold my peace. I do not need
any telephone communication in this regard due to my deteriorating health
and because of the presence of my husband's relatives around me, I do not
want them to know about this development. With God all things are
possible. As soon as I receive your reply I shall give you the contact of
the Bank in UK. I will also issue you a Letter of Authority that will
empower you as the original beneficiary of this fund. My happiness is that
I lived a life worthy of emulation. Please always be prayerful all through
Please assure me that you will act just as I have stated herein. Hope to
hear from you soon and God bless you and members of your family.
Reply to my mail through my email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Yours Faithfully in Christ,
Mrs. Ghayth Faiza.
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