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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "hundred thousand us 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.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: Sarah Al Moubi <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 8 Mar 2017 21:34:25 -0500
Subject: Greetings From Mrs Sarah Al Moubi.
Greetings From Mrs Sarah Al Moubi.
I sent this mail praying for it to reach you in good health, since Imyself are in a very critical health condition in which I sleep every nightwithout knowing if I may be alive to see the next day. I am Mrs Sarah Al Moubi,a widow suffering from long time illness. I have some funds I inherited from mylate husband, the sum of (ten million five hundred thousand US dollars) myDoctor told me recently that I would not last due to the illness. Having knownmy condition, I decided to donate this fund to a good person that will utilizeit the way i am going to instruct herein. I need a very honest and God fearingperson who can claim this money and use it for Charity works, for orphanages,widows and also build schools for less privilege that will be named after mylate husband if possible.
I accept this decision because I do not have any child who will inheritthis money after I die.
Please I want your sincerely and urgent answer to know if you will beable to execute this project, and I will give you more information on how thefund will be transferred to your bank account.
Please for safety reasons kindly reply to this email: email@example.com
I am waiting for your reply.
Mrs Sarah Al Moubi.