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:
- 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:
- "remain blessed" (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 mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
- 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 (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "RITA J. MADINE"
Date: Sat, 26 Dec 2015 15:21:45 +0200
Subject: Quick Response
HELLO MY DEAR BELOVED.
MY PRIVATE EMAIL ADDRESS: email@example.com =
I AM MRS. RITA J. MADINE FROM REPUBLIC OF IRELAND, BORN IN THE STATE OF O=
HIO USA. I AM LEGALLY MARRIED TO MR. HILARY MADINE, A SOUTH AFRICA CIT=
IZEN BORN BROUGHT UP IN SWITZERLAND, I LIVE IN SWITZERLAND WITH MY HUSBAND=
FOR 32 YEARS BEFORE WE MOVE DOWN TO SOUTH AFRICA IN 1985 AFTER MY HUSBAND =
RETIREMENT IN 1984, I AM 71 YEARS OLD BY THE GRACE OF GOD. I AM A GOD FEA=
RING PERSON, AND I AM SUFFERING FROM LONG TIME (illness) CANCER OF THE BREA=
ST. THIS ILLNESS (SICKNESS) HAS TROUBLED ME FOR A LONG TIME.
ALL INDICATION FROM MY DOCTOR THAT MY CONDITION IS REALLY DETERIORATING AND=
GETTING WORSE; AND IT IS QUITE OBVIOUS THAT I WOULDN=2019T LIVE MORE THAN =
THREE MONTHS, ACCORDING TO MY DOCTOR AND IN ALL INDICATION REGARDS TO MEDIC=
AL ANALYSIS.THIS IS BECAUSE THE CANCER DISEASE HAS GOTTEN TO A VERY BAD STA=
GE THAT NO HOPE FOR ME TO BE A LIVING PERSON AGAIN. MY DEAR HUSBAND WAS INV=
OLVED WITH THE JANUARY 2000 KENYA AIRWAYS PLANE CRASHED AS YOU CAN SEE ON T=
HE NEWS LINE WEB SITE. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/6627485.stm )
40 YEARS PERIOD OF MARRIAGE LIFE, STILL WE COULD NOT PRODUCE ANY CHILD, MY =
LATE HUSBAND WAS VERY WEALTHY AND AFTER HIS DEATH, I INHERITED SOME PART OF=
HIS BUSINESS AND MONEY IN THE BANK. THE DOCTOR HAS ADVISED ME THAT I MAY N=
OT LIVE FOR MORE THAN THREE MONTHS AND 2 WEEKS AND WARN ME TO STOP FROM THI=
NKING OVER WHO IS GOING TO INHERIT ME AND THE WEALTH. BASED ON THAT, TODAY =
I HAVE DECIDED TO DONATE AND CONTRIBUTE TO THE LESS PRIVILEGES, CHARITY HOM=
ES, AND ORPHANAGE HOMES AND TO THOSE DISPLACED BY WARS GOING ON IN THE MIDD=
L-EAST AND ARROUND THE WORLD. I MADE THIS DECISION AFTER LISTING TO THE NEW=
S LINE ABOUT 100 YEARS OLD WOMAN WHO SECRETLY DONATED HER FORTUNE AND WEALT=
H UPON HER DEATH,
I CHOOSE YOU AFTER VIEWING YOUR PROFILE AND I HAVE THE CONFIDENT IN YOU BEC=
AUSE I HAVE PRAYED. I AM WILLING TO DONATE THE SUM OF $20.5MILLION U.S DOLL=
ARS, TO THE LESS PRIVILEGED OF WHICH YOU WILL BE RESPONSIBLE IN TAKING CARE=
OF THE DISBURSEMENT AND SHARING OF THIS MONEY TO ORGANIZATIONS THAT I WILL=
APPOINT. MEANWHILE, YOU WILL ALSO GET 30% OF THE MONEY WHICH WILL BE; SIX =
MILLION AND ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS ($6,100,000) AS YOUR COMPENSATION =
FOR HELPING ME FUFIL THIS DESIRE OF DONOATION. =
PLEASE I WANT YOU TO NOTE THAT THIS FUND IS STILL IN THE BANK WHERE MY LATE=
HUSBAND DEPOSITED IT, I AM GOING TO ADVICE MY LAWYER TO CHANGE MY LAST WI=
LL TO YOUR NAME AND FILE IN AN APPLICATION FOR THE TRANSFER OF THE MONEY IN=
YOUR NAME. LASTLY, I HONESTLY PRAY THAT THIS MONEY WHEN TRANSFERRED TO YOU=
R ACCOUNT WILL BE USED FOR THE SAID PURPOSE EVEN THOUGH I AM LATE THEN OR A=
LIVE, BECAUSE I HAVE COME TO FIND OUT THAT WEALTH ACQUISITION IS NOT ALWAYS=
THE FINAL THING IN LIFE OR DEATH IF YOU DO NOT HELP PEOPLE AS WELL WHEN TH=
EY NEED IT. PLEASE BEAR IT IN MIND THAT ALL THE MONEY WILL RIGHTFULLY BELO=
NG TO YOUR NAME AS QUICKLY AS I GET YOUR REPLY, AND I MADE THE PROMISE TO =
GOD THAT THE FUND WILL BE USED TO HELP THE NEEDY AND THE LESS PRIVILEGE, RE=
PLY ME THROUGH THIS EMAIL:OR YOU CAN CALL MY NUMBER IS : +27 78 64 99716=
MAY THE GRACE OF OUR LORD THE LOVE OF GOD AND THE FELLOWSHIP OF GOD BE WITH=
YOU AND YOUR FAMILY, PLEASE FURTHER DISCUSSION, CONTACT ME WITH MY EMAIL A=
DDRESS: firstname.lastname@example.org =
REPLY ME THROUGH THIS EMAIL: =
I AWAIT URGENT REPLY.
MRS. RITA J. MADINE