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 friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- ",500,000" (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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr Warren Edward Buffet" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 20 Sep 2014 00:39:33 -0700
Subject: DONATION FOR YOU!!
You have been gifted $2.5 MILLION USD donation fund. Contact us at this email for your claim: email@example.com
I hope this information meet you well as I know you will be curious to know why/how I selected you to receive a cash sum
of $2,500,000,00 USD, our information below is 100% legitimate, please see the link below:
I and my wife decided to donate the sum of $2,500,000,00 USD to you as part of our charity project to improve the lot of
20 lucky individuals all over the world from our $12 Billion USD I and My Wife Mapped out to help people before she died.
We prayed and searched over the internet for assistance because i saw your profile on Microsoft email owners list and
picked you. Susan, my wife and I have decided to make sure this is put on the internet for the world to see. my wife has
cancer and she died at Colchester regional hospital, my wife just didn't die but she was a great person and I miss her so
much and this is why I have decided to do one thing I promised her forever. as you could see from the webpage above, am
not getting any younger and you can imagine having no much time to live. although am a Billionaire Investor and we have
helped some charity organizations from our Fund.
I like to re-assure you of the legitimacy of this services as we will not be involved in any fraudulent act and will never
be. use the money wisely, we only want to feel good by helping people this time of the year, this is the only thing that
makes my wife happy too even now that she is not here with me anymore, we have too much to give away as I only have few
months left on earth. I will advise as you as the prospective lucky Person to be calm not to loose this great opportunity
which millions of people are trying to entangled but the chances just couldn't come for them because a lot of people are
out there to discourage them as they don't know how it works, and have never seen such before.
On receipt of this email, you should count yourself as the lucky individual. Your email address was chosen online while
searching at random. Kindly get back to me at your earliest convenience, so I know your email address is valid.and you are to get back to me with below
Your Name and Address
Your age and Sex
Your Occupation and Telephone number
Thank you for accepting our offer, we are indeed grateful You Can Google my name for more information: Mr. Warren Edward Buffet.
God bless you,
Mr Warren Edward Buffet