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:
- "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)
- "utmost confidentiality" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- "with absolute secrecy" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- This email message is a "dying widow" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: ELIZABETH DUSSIO <email@example.com>
Reply-To: ELIZABETH DUSSIO <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 6 Dec 2016 05:42:58 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: DONATION FOR CHARITY WORK OF GOD IN YOUR COUNTRY
Dear in the Lord,
I apologize if the contents in this mail are contrary to your moral ethics which I feel may be of great disturbance to your personal life but please treat with absolute secrecy and personal and I pray that this email reaches you in the best of health.
I believe my contacting you is not an ordinary coincidence because God can use any body known or unknown to accomplish great things which he has ordained.
I was hospitalized after I had a car accident with my family I lost my husband and my two daughters who were also on board in the accident.? I have been battling with some health problems from the major injuries that I sustained in the cause of accident.
Recently, my doctor told me that I may or may not have some few months to live due to the surgery that was conducted though what disturbs is my present predicament due to the damaged of my spinal cords in the accident.
Having known my condition, I have decided to Will/Donate the sum of ($2,500,000.00 ) to charity and individual for the good work of God, and to help the motherless, less privileged and also for the assistance of the widows in your country.
Because I am the only surviving person and nobody else that will inherit this money they are now dead.
All I want you to do is to assist in safe-keep of this fund? before it gets confiscated or declared un-serviceable.
I seek your consent to present you as the Trustee to my late husband's inheritance so that the proceeds of this account can be paid to you If you are interested in carrying out this task, I want you to tell me so that I can arrange all the modalities to effect the release of the fund to you.I know I have never met you but my mind tells me to do this and I hope you will act sincerely.I have also decided that 30% of (Two million, five hundred thousand United States dollars) should be taken by you from the total sum upon the successful release of this fund.
I am now too weak and fragile to do things myself because of my present health problems.
I am not afraid even if I die I know I will be in the bosom of the Lord Exodus 14 vs14 says that the Lord will fight my case and I shall hold my peace.
I will appreciate your utmost confidentiality in this matter until the task is accomplished as I don't want anything that will jeopardize my last wish.
Yours faithfully in Lord,
Mrs Elzabeth Dussio