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 state 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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "abidjan" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- "remain blessed" (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- This email message is a "dying widow" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: Safi Kilima <Killima19@yahoo.co.jp>
Date: Tue, 9 Dec 2014 17:18:14 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Remain Blessed
Â From Mrs. Safi Kilima,
I do recognised the surprise this letter will bring to you, most especially as it comes from a stranger.I am Mrs.Safi Kilima from Cote D`Ivoire but me and my late Husband based in London before death took him away from me,i am in the hospital due to my sickness,i decided to offer this donation to the Widows of Orphanages because i saw that they are suffering,expecially the childrens.
I am donating this sum of Four million,Eight Hundred Thousand United State Dollars.(USD$4.800,000)to the ophanages and widows and most people that was affected by disasters,but the Fund is in one famouse Bank here in Abidjan Cote D`Ivoire.So i want you to help to retrieve and receive the Fund,then use it for the affected people and Widows & Orphanage.
Recently,my Doctor told me that I have serious sickness which is cancer problem. The one that disturbs me most is my stroke sickness.Having known my condition I decided to donate this fund to the affected people,i want you to utilize this Fund the way I am going to instruct herein.
I want you to use this fund for orphanages, widows and most affected people.I am not afraid of death hence I know where I am going. I know that I am going to be in the bossom of the mighty God.
I don't need any telephone communication in this regard because of my Critical Condition of health which the Doctor said that i should not call or answer any telephone call because of my health condition.
As soon as I receive your reply I shall give you the contact of the Bank here in Abidjan Cote D`Ivoire,so that you will contact with them and instruct them to transfer the Fund to your account.
Please always be prayerful and also put me in your daily prayers,assure me that you will act accordingly as I Stated herein.
Hoping to receive your reply.
Mrs. Safi Kilima.