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:
- 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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "H.C Scott" <email@example.com>
Reply-To: "H.C Scott" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 19 Dec 2014 02:01:17 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Hello Dear My ($4,860,000.000) Donation
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 Four million, Eight Hundred and Sixty Thousand
dollars($4,860,000.000) 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.
I count on your goodwill and especially on the proper use of these funds.