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:
- "million 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)
- This email message is a "dying widow" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: MRS YEETY BAYARMAA <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 3 Jan 2017 10:34:10 +0100
Subject: FROM MRS YEETY BAYARMAA
FROM MRS YEETY BAYARMAA
I know that this letter may be a very big surprise to you, I came
across your email contact from my personal search and I instructed the
doctor here in this hospital to help me email you and i believe that
you will be honest to fulfill my final wish before i will die.
I am Mrs. Yeety Bayarmaa, I am 66 years old, From Mongoila, and I am
suffering from a long time cancer of the breast. From all indication
my condition is really deteriorating, and my doctors have courageously
advised me that I may not live beyond 3 month; this is because the
cancer has reached a critical stage.
I was married to late Dr Bayramaa Altangerel, gold & diamond
exportation) in Burkina Faso, West Africa, where we live all our Lives
for Thirty-two years before he died in the year2004. But is quite
unfortunately, He died after a Cardiac Arteries Operation that lasted
only for four days.
Since his death I decided not to re-marry, I deposited all the sum of
$5.8million dollars with a Bank in Ouagadougou- Burkina Faso, where we
spend our life together in Burkina Faso.
Presently, this money is still in their custody, and the management
just wrote me as the Legitimate beneficiary to come forward to receive
the money after keeping it for so long or rather issue a letter of
authorization to somebody to receive it on my behalf since I cannot
come over as a result of my illness, or they get it confiscated.
Presently, Iâm with my laptop in a hospital where I have been
undergoing treatment. I have since lost my ability to do anything
myself and my doctors have told me that I have only 3 month to live.
Now that i am about to end the race like this, without any family
members and no child. It is my last wish to see that this money is
invested, but you will assure me that you will take 50% of the money
and give 50% to the orphanages home in your country for my heart to
I want your good humanitarian, to also use this money to fund
churches, orphanages and widows around. I must let you know that this
was a very hard decision, but I had to take a bold step towards this
issue because I have no further option. I hope you will help see my
last wishes come true.
As soon as I receive your reply I shall give you the contact of the
Bank. I will also issue you a letter of authority which will prove
that you are the new beneficiary of my funds, and the documents
concerning the deposit. Please assure me that you will act accordingly
as I stated herein. Hope to hear from you soonest. I am waiting your
Yours Sick Sister in Christ,
Mrs. Yeety Bayarmaa.