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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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:
- "dear beloved," (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "00,000.00" (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)
- "utmost confidentiality" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- This email message is a "dying widow" scam.
- This email lists free webmail addresses. Use of such addresses is typical for scams. Lotteries, banks and any but the smallest of companies do not normally use such addresses. Criminals use them to anonymously send and receive email at Internet cafes.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs. Kate Brumley" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 28 Jul 2012 05:13:34 +0200
Subject: PLEASE READ.HE IS MERCIFUL !!!
My name is Mrs. Kate Brumley I am a dying woman who has decided to donate
what I have to charities through you. You may be wondering why I chose
you.But someone has to be chosen. I am 59 years old and was diagnosed
forcancer about 2 years ago, after the death of my husband who had left
me everything he worked for. I have been touched by the Lord to donate
from what I have inherited from my late husband to charity through you
for the good work of humanity, rather than allow my relatives to use
my husband's hard earned funds inappropriately.
I have asked the Lord to forgive me all my sins and I believe he
has,because He is merciful. I will be going in for an operation, and I pray
that I survive the operation. I have decided to Will/Donate the sum of
$10,300,000.00 (Ten Million three hundred thousand Dollars) to charities
through you for the good work of the Lord, and to help the motherless,
lessprivileged and also for the assistance of the widows.
Presently, I have informed my consultant about my decision in willing
this fund to charity through you. I wish you all the best and may the
good Lord bless you abundantly, and please use the funds well and always
extend the good work to others. If you are interested in carrying out
this task, I will inform my consultant, so that he can arrange the
release of the funds to you. I know I have never met you but my mind tells
me to do this, and I hope you act sincerely. I decided that 30% of this
money should be taken by you from the total sum upon the success
release of this fund, because I am now too weak and fragile to do things
myself because of my cancer.
NB:I sincerely know that a lot has been written about some SCAM coming
out of the world, but I assure you that this will never in any way
associated with that as you will be given the right to verify this directly
with the Bank were the funds is presently deposited.
I will appreciate your utmost confidentiality in this matter until the
task is accomplished, as I don't want anything that will jeopardize my
last wish, due to the fact that I do not want relatives or family
members standing in the way of my last wish.
Reply me via this email address:firstname.lastname@example.org
God bless you and your family.
Mrs. Kate Brumley
PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR FULL NAME, ADDRESS, TELEPHONE/FAX NUMBER ON YOUR
REPLY FOR EASY AND IMMEDIATE COMMUNICATION WITH MY CONSULTANT.