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:
- 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:
- ",000,000" (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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: Susannah B Juan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply-To: Susannah B Juan <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 12 Dec 2014 11:10:40 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Re: My Donation
Â Hello My Dear.
Greetings to you , I know that this message will appear as a surprise to you that we barely know but the i trust you will not betray an ill woman. I have a brain tumor, I suffer terribly at the moment. My doctor just informed me that my days are numbered because of my ill health and continuous deterioration . Currently, I have exhausted all my savings for my medical care and something tells me that the end of my life is near.
But I do have some funds for my charity project which i and my husband planned before he died, these funds are deposited in a fixed deposit in a local bank here in Benin. purposed for charitable foundation. My marital status is such that I'm single because I lost my Husband for over 9 years now and unfortunately we have not had a child together, which I am no one to leave my legacy . Therefore, to release my funds I would like to make a donation so that there is no stiff tax on my money.
To this I would so graceful and in order to help the poor to give what amounts to said legacy worth (4,000,000 â¬) (Four Million Euro) to enable you to establish a charitable foundation in my memory so that those who are ill, homeless and those suffering from abject poverty will be honored and remembered.
I have no fear because before contacted you, i have for several nights thought about this and my instinct convince me to contact you as a trusted person to whom I can entrust with this matter and it is the result of why I am doing so by contacting you.
Know that you can keep certain amount for yourself and the rest will be used to create a charitable foundation in my memory and a federation in the fight against cancer and also build orphanages, will let you know the amount you will keep for your self when you contact me. Please kindly contact me back with the following information: Your name and first name, your exact address and your mobile/house/office telephone contact, and an identification Card such as drivers license or international passport data page so I can forward them to my bank and have you present to the bank as the next person in charge of this fund, so that if i die anytime, the situation will not be complicated. My Private email:Â firstname.lastname@example.org,
I count on your goodwill and especially on the proper use of these funds.
My Private email:Â email@example.com