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:
- "trunk box" (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)
- "trunk boxes" (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)
- "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)
- ",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)
- "united state of america" (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a "dying merchant" scam.
- 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: Aaron Birch <email@example.com>
Reply-To: Aaron Birch <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 18 Dec 2014 12:02:11 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: My beloved,Complement of the Season
My beloved,How are you doing today?,
Greetings to you and please permit me to introduce myself. i am Dr.Aaron Cohen Birch,i am from Mexico but livingÂ in United State of AmericaÂ i am very wealthy man a crude oil merchant before i was diagnosed with esophageal cancer which has defiled all medical solutions and according to medical experts i only have a few more months to live.
as you read this you do not have to feel sorry for me as it is a universal truth that we all must die someday, the only problem with mine though being that i have particularly not lived my life well in spite of my wealth and possessions as i never really cared for anyone (not even myself) but my business.
though i was very rich i was never generous, i was never caring about people but only dedicated my time and resources on my business as that was the only thing i cared about.
but now i regret all this as i now know that there is more to life! than just accumulating all the wealth in the world as i lay helplessly on my sick bed. if i was given a second chance to live again i sure would live my lifeÂ different way from how i have lived it owing to what has befallen me now.
as my last days alive are drawing closer and closer i have already willed out most of my properties and assets to my immediate and extended family members as well as a few close friends.
i also want my soul to be at peace with god and for him to be merciful on me and accept my soul and to this regard i have resolved to give my remaining funds to charity organizations as i want this to stand as one of the last deeds i indulge in on earth before i die. though i have already distributed money to some charity organizations, now that my health has deteriorated so badly i can no longer continue with this myself and also i do not trust my immediate family members or close friends and my wife died during the September 11,2001 attack on the world trader center in n y , and during the period of our marriage we could not produce any child. on this as i have once asked immediate family members or close friends to close one of my account! Units and distribute the funds therein to charity organizations they greedily kept the money to themselves. Hence i am contacting you with this as i have lost confidence in them because it is obvious they are not contended With what i have left for them.
the last of my funds which no one knows of is a cash deposit of (Ten million four hundred thousand united states dollars) ($10.4,000,000,00) stashed in one trunk boxes and declared as personal effects of high security value which i have with a finance company. all i am asking of you is to assist me in making the collection of this deposit and dispatching the funds for development of the church and any charity organizations of your choice, after keeping 20% of the funds for yourself and your family.
Please contact me as soon as you get this email if you are capable and sincere to handle this project! Section on my behalf so i can forward you with all relevant documents necessary for the claims and the name of the firm where the funds are deposited.
god bless you as i await words from you. please inform as soon as possible if you are not interested so i can proceed to seek for someone else to carry out this on my behalf. find attached my International Passport my picture on my hospital bed along with this email for your verification.
My address where i live in State 6309 N. Monticello Ave
Chicago, Illinois 60659 UNITED STATES OF AMERICA for your verification)
Here is all so my home address in MEXICO, COFRE DE PEROTE 305 701
LOMAS DE CHAPULTEPEC MEXICO, D.F. MEXICO C-P. 11000 for your verification all so)
please reply via my private Email address: (email@example.com)
God bless you.
Yours lovely brother
Dr.Aaron Cohen Birch