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 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Mrs Estel Bedie <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 27 Jul 2012 16:38:00 +0100 (BST)
Subject: Mrs Estel's Private Legal Donations
Mrs Estel's Private Legal Donations
Based on your good profile i want to solicit for your help in fulfiling my wish ,i am Mrs. Estel Bedie.58yrs old widow from Ethiopia, my husband and i worked with Tullow oil Cote d Ivoire before he died seven years ago, i am writting you this message via a computer lap top on my sick bed at the hospital were i am undergoing medical treatment i have been diagnosed of Endometrial cancer unfortunatelly for me my doctor said i don't have any chance to survive except by a miracle i have spent a lot of money on medical treatment yet no improvement.
The reason why i am writting you this letter is because i want you to stand as beneficiary to the sum of my £ 4.5 Million (Four million five hundred thousand pounds) i dont have any bilogical child of my own who will inherit this money neither do i have any adopted child My relatives and friends have plundered so much of my wealth since my illness and i cannot live with the agony of entrusting this huge responsibility to any of them anymore.
I want to donate this money to support churches and evangelism i also want to help children and orphangeshomes by Donating this (£4.500.000.00 GBP) as charity is the only legacy i can leave behind after my death, help me to fulfil this goal before i die and please always remember to pray for me as well because i know that prayer in the key to live.
Expecting to your message soonest.
Sincerlly Mrs Estel Henry Bedie.