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:
- "united state of america" (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a "dying widow" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs. Teresa Lewis" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 5 Mar 2014 23:06:06 +0100
Subject: Bless You My Dear
Bless You My Dear
I am Mrs. Teresa Lewis, age 73 years old,I am the wife of late Mr. Robert Lewis, I got your information's from my late husband diary we are both from United State Of America, my husband worked with the Oil and Gas Company Chevron/Texaco in Africa for twenty years before he pass out.
When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of $5.5million with Guaranty Trust Bank Plc in Africa Nigeria,Presently this money is still with the Bank, and the bank management just send me an email to come over for the release of this money to me or i should rather issue! somebody to received the money on my behalf. Now I'm in a hospital in Netherlands where I have been undergoing treatment for cancer of the breast and Pneumonia, the doctor told me i may not last up to end of this year because of my present situation of my illness.
I need your help receiving this fund on my behalf and use it to help people who are in need of help,Immediately these fund get to you,I want you take 30% out of the fund for you and your family and use 70% for charity work that will help the poor children and widows around the world.I need your information so i can forward it to the bank to let the management know i want my fund release to you.
Bless you as i hope to read from you soon.
Yours in Christ,
Mrs. Teresa Lewis