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:
- "god fearing " (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Mrs Vicky LeBaron ALi <email@example.com>
Reply-To: Mrs Vicky LeBaron ALi <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2014 01:58:05 +0900 (JST)
Dearly Devoted One,
I am Mrs Vicky LeBaron ALi an ageing widow suffering from long time illness. i
currently admitted in a private hospital in south africa here and my
doctor here let me knowing that they will be directing me to CHU de
Treichville general hospital in (abidjan CÃ´te d'Ivoire ) there they have
a good and biggest specials on the sickness,
I want to let you
know that i have some funds I inherited from my late loving husband DrÂ
Richard ALi LeBaron the sum of EUROS â¬5.16 000 which he deposited in
Security Bank and I need a very honest and God fearing Honorable person
like YOU that can use this funds for God's work and 15% out of the total
funds will be for your compensation for doing this work of God. I found
your email address from the Directors site and decide to contact you
please i want this fund to be out from that suspend account before they
Election next month. Please if you would be able to use these funds for
the Lord's work kindly reply me.
Your Sister In The Lord.
Mrs Vicky LeBaron ALi