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:
- "million dollars" (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)
- "remain blessed" (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- This email message is a "dying widow" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: =?utf-8?B?TXJzIEVzdCBTw6l2?= <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply-To: =?utf-8?B?TXJzIEVzdCBTw6l2?= <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 22 May 2014 22:46:20 +0900 (JST)
Subject: MY DONATINON,
Greetings in the name of our lord Jesus Christ, I am Mrs Est SÃ©v from France , a widow to late Tom SÃ©v. I am 49 years old, I am now a new Christian convert, suffering from long time cancer of the breast, from all indication my conditions is really deteriorating and it is quite obvious that I might not live up to 3 months, according to my doctor, This is because the cancer stage has gotten to a very bad stage. My late husband died last five years, and during the period of our marriage we couldnât produce any child. My late husband was very wealthy based in Cote dâIvoire West Africa during his time and after his death, I inherited all his business and wealth. The doctors has advised me that i may not live for more than 3months
I was at that night reading my bible and I came across Proverbs 21:13 If a man shuts his ears to the cry of the poor, he too will cry out and not be answered, that scripture rocked my world , now i decided to divide the part of this wealth, to contribute to the development of the church in Africa, America Asia, and Europe, because this is what GOD expects from us in HIS church, Is our faith just about going to church, studying the bible, and avoiding sin?? Or does GOD expect more from HIS church?? I believe HE expects more from us, I selected you after I prayed over it. Now I am willing to donate the sum of ($2.5 million dollars USD) to the less privileged, I honestly pray that this money when in your possession will be used for the said purpose, because I have come to find out that wealth acquisition without Christ is vanity. Please your daily prayer's is very important to me I believe with prayers I must receive my healing miracleas we are Serving a
Romans 1:17 My Nurse help me to write this email.
Hoping to hearing from you
Yours Sister in Christ
Mrs Est SÃ©v