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:
- "trunk box" (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)
- "remain blessed" (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- This email message is a "dying widow" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: Madam Elizabeth Sinbi <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 11 Feb 2011 00:52:04 +0800 (CST)
Subject: Christian Greetings From Sister Elizabeth Sinbi
From. Sister Elizabeth Sinbi
Dearest In The Lord,
I know that this mail maybe of a surprise to you and i will be highly appreciated to have your positive response,
I am Mrs Elizabeth Sinbi from Sierra Leone. I married to Mr. Isaac Sinbi who worked with Sierra Leone. Embassy in Abidjan Cote d'ivoire for nine years before his died in the year 2005.
We were married for eleven years without a child. He died after a brief illness that lasted for only four days. Before his death we were both born again Christian. Since his death I decided not to remarry or get a child outside my matrimonial home which the Bible is against.
When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of $2.5Million ( Two.five Million U.S. Dollars)in Assistance 2000 Security Company here in Abidjan Cote d'ivoire, and adviced me that he used my name as the next of kin and that the security company officials does noty know the real content of the trunk box because of security of the money and he comorflage it as (FAMILY VALUABLES AND TREASURES) it is still with the Security Company.
Recently, my Doctor told me that i have serious sickness which is cancer problem. The one that disturbs me most is my stroke sickness. Having known my condition I decided to donate this fund to a church or individual that will utilize this money the way Iam going to instruct herein.
I want a church that will use this fund for orphanages, widows, propagating the word of God and to endeavor that the house of God is maintained.
The Bible made us to understand that,Blessed is the hand that giveth, Itook this decision because I don have any child that will inherit this money and I don't want my husband efforts to be in vain. I don want a situation where this money will be used in an ungodly way.
This is why I am taking this decision. I am not afraid of death hence I know where I am going. I know that I am going to be in the bosom of the Lord. Exodus 14 VS 14 says that the lord will fight my case and I shall hold my peace and i know with this development With God all things are possible.
As soon as Ireceive your reply I shall give you the contact of the security company here in Abidjan.I want you and the church to always pray for me because the lord is my shephard. My happiness is that I lived a life of a worthy Christian. Whoever that Wants to serve the Lord must serve him in spirit and Truth.
Please always be prayerful all through your life.Contact me on the above e_mail address for more informations, any delay in your reply will give me room in sourcing another church or individual for this same purpose. Please assure me that you will act accordingly as I Stated herein.
Hoping to receive your reply.
Remain blessed in the Lord.
Yours in Christ,
Sister Elizabeth Sinbi ,