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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "dear beloved," (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "please endeavor to " (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "into your nominated bank account" (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)
- "liberia" (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: MRS ROSE AMANDA DUKE
Date: Sat, 16 Jul 2016 12:31:40 -0400
Subject: HELP OTHERS WITH IT !!
I'm Rose Amanda Duke
PLEASE ENDEAVOR TO USE IT FOR THE CHILDREN OF GOD. I am the above named person. I am married to Dr. Duke A LIBERIAN but I'm now in Nigerian General HOSPITAL taking treatment for my sickness, my husband worked with U.S embassy in LIBERIAN for nine years and also has an Oil Engineering Company in Nigeria before he died in the year 2008, before his died in the year 2008 We were married for twenty years without a child, and i was brought up in motherless babies home in Australia before i married to him, am From Australia before i married to My husband who is from Liberia. He died after a brief illness that lasted for only four days. Before his death we were both born again Christians. Since his death I decided not to re-marry or get a child outside my matrimonial home because of the love both of us share.
When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of$5.5 Million (Five Million five hundred thousand U.S.Dollars) with A Bank Presently, this money is still under the safe keeping of the Reserve SECURITY COMPANY Recently, my Doctor told me that I would not last for the next five months due to my cancer problems.
Though what disturbs me most is my stroke .Having known my condition, I decided to donate this fund to church or better still a Christian or Muslim individual That will utilize this money the way I am going to instruct here in. I want a church or individual that will use this fund on, orphanages and widows propagating the word of God and to ensure that the house of God is maintained. The Bible made us to understand that blessed is the hand that giveth. I took this decision because I don't have any child that will inherit this money and my husband relatives are not Christians and I don't want my husband's hard earned money to be misused by unbelievers. I don't want a situation where this money will be used in an ungodly manner. Hence the reason for taking this bold decision.
I am not afraid of death hence I know where I am going. I know that I am going to be in the bosom of the Lord. Exodus 14 VS 14 says that the lord will fight my case and I shall hold my peace. I don't need any telephone communication in this regard because of my health because of the presence of my husband's relatives around me always. I don't want them to know about this development. With God all things are possible. As soon as I receive your reply I forward your personal information, such as your full name, your full address, with telephone and fax number to my lawyer so that he will contact you as the legal owner of my fund before the bank will be transferring the fund into your nominated Bank Account in your country.
I will also issue you a letter of a authority that will back you up as the real next of kin and the original- beneficiary of my fund. I want you and the church to always pray for me because the lord is my shepherd, you will also promise me that you will not seat on the fund when it gets into your bank account. My happiness is that I lived a life of a worthy Christian. Whoever that wants to serve the Lord must serve him in spirit and truth. Please always be prayerful all through your life, any delay in your reply will give me room in searching for a church or Christian individual for this same purpose. Please assure me that you will act accordingly as I stated herein. Hoping to hear from you as soon as possible.
Yours in Christ,
Mrs Rose A manda Duke