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. Sarah Arvin" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2014 00:18:25 +0100
Subject: BeHold - Good Morning..
My name is Mrs. Sarah Arvin. From Malaysia married to Mr. Ghazlan Arvin. From Alaska usa.
I am a sick woman who was diagnosed for cancer for about 9 years ago, immediately after the accident of my husband and Daughter who has left me everything he worked for to fulfill a wish he couldn't complete when he was alive.
I have been touched by God to use what I inherited from my late husband to the greater purpose as helping the suffering people. Help mothers with sick children, so that they do not suffer after their loss. To help single mothers raising children. Lonely and helpless elderly people.
My dear as you can see i am very sick and old i cant do this work myself please I need a trustworthy person like you to handle my wish by extending the good work.
I have no relative that can do this work for me please i want you to be my sister my brother and i will also like you to come and visit me at the hospital here I am to know who i am as soon as my fund is release to you.
More details will be made known to you upon your response
Thank you so very much as i wait to hear from you.
Mrs. Sarah Arvin