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:
- "i will like you to " (a common phrase found 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: "Mrs Sandra Makota" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 5 Jan 2011 21:29:32 -0000
Subject: My Dearest in Christ Jesus The Lord,
My Dearest in Christ Jesus The Lord,
My name is Mrs .Sandra Makota a nationality of Kuwait . I am married to late Mr. JAMES MAKOTA who worked with Kuwait embassy here in GHANA for nine years before he died in the year October 2006. We were married for twenty years with a child. My Husband died after an illness that lasted for four days May his Soul rest in perfect peace Amen.
Before his death we were both born again Christians. When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of (Ten Million U.S.Dollars) with one of good banks here in GHANA presently, this money is still with the bank. Recently my Doctor told me that I would not last for the next three months due to my cancer problem, though what disturbs me most is my stroke. Having known my condition I decided to donate this fund to church or better still a Christian individual that will utilize this money the way I am going to instruct here in. more especially earthquake victims in Haiti and also any organization of your choice, the poor and the motherless babies. I want a person or church that will use this fund to churches, orphanages, research centers and widows propagating the word of God and to ensure that the house of God is maintained.
The Bible made us to understand that blessed is the hand that giveth. I took this decision because I have a child that will inherit this money but my son can not carryout this work only because I and my late husband decide to use some of the money to work for God and live some for our son to have a better live. our son is just 17year old now and been grow up in Africa, he have low maternity and my husband's relatives are not Christians and I don't want my family hard earned money to be misused by unbelievers, I don't 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 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. I will like you to understand that my contact to you is a divine direction from God, I don't want any of my husband family relatives to receive this money but I know that With God all things are possible. As soon as
Remain blessed in the name of the Lord.
Yours Sister in Christ
Mrs .Sandra Makota and Son Johnson,