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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "hundred thousand united states 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)
- "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.
- 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 (Yahoo; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: MRS SHARI <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 26 Sep 2014 12:30:14 +0000 (UTC)
Â Esteem Greeting,
I write to you in good faith and hoping that you will understand the importance of my email. My decision to contact you is because I have been recently diagnosed with Cancer and the doctor said I have less than 6 weeks to live. Since this sudden news was announced to me, I have been reflecting over my life in the past. It is painful that
after over 24 years of peaceful marriage with my late husband, we had no child of our own that will inherit our numerous wealth.
In the past, I have made reasonable donations to the victims of Earthquake in Haiti and recently to the same victims in Philippines,Japan and Thailand. Now that my health is gradually deteriorating, I cannot continue to do all these by myself any more. I strongly desire to reach out to the poor and needy people, but I would prefer to continue this with the assistance of a kind person.
I want you to answer the following questions, (1) are you a God fearing person? (2) If I donate (5.5)Five Million five Hundred Thousand United States Dollars to you, can you be able to utilize it
wisely to achieve my heart desire of supporting poor people around you? (3)Will you open a charity foundation in the name of my husband and 1? Please reply me as soon as possible.
mrs Sharita yazongo
reply to my email below