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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "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)
- ",500,000" (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)
- "00,000.00" (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.
Fraud email example:
From: "Engr. Cecil Orsini." (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 31 Aug 2016 02:01:51 -0500
Subject: RE: <<PLEASE TREAT AS URGENT>>
Please, let this not sound strange to you for my lawyer whom could have done this for me died early this year. My name is Engr. Cecil Orsini writing you this letter from the Cancer Treatment Centers of America, Southeastern Regional Medical Center. I am 72years old man, a certified civil engineering contractor married for 31years without an issue. My wife died 7years ago due to heart related disease and at worst I am now suffering cancer of the lung and brain tumor. All my friends ran away from me as my health status worsen. I have NO child of mine; and I was brought up from motherless babies home.
Last week, my panel of doctors' said, i might not live for the next two weeks from date as my health conditions defies all medications so far. Oh death!. I shouted. Though, I am not afraid for any time my God calls me home, I strongly believe that I will be in his bosom forever.
It is my last wish to see that you wisely invest this US$7,500,000.00 (seven million, five hundred thousand United States dollars) only i deposited in a bank; yearly distributed some quarter among the charity organizations, the poor and the motherless babies' home. I'm taken this holy decision believing that you will be capable of handling this task for me. I will give you all necessary documents about the $7.5m deposit as would be demanded by my bank. The process to receive the funds is very simply and legally allowed.
Please state your interest assuring me that you will act accordingly as I stated herein. Also include your contact details for me while replying this e-mail so we can start the process in earnest.
Your Name: ......................
Your Address: ...................
Mobile #: ..........................
I will wait to hear from you to know if you are capable of doing this favor for me, may God be our witness and source of strength as you decide to do this holy wish.
Engr. Cecil Orsini.