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:
- "god fearing " (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Christel Walker" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 8 May 2017 18:07:26 -0000
Subject: Re:-Thank You for your response
I am Christel Walker, Originally from United Kingdom, I am 56 years old; I am dropping this short message from my sick bed after being diagnosed from a long time cancer of the breast. From all indication my condition is really deteriorating, and my doctor has courageously advised that I will not live beyond the next two months, this is because the Seriousness of the cancer has reached a critical stage.I am looking for a trust and God fearing someone To confide in. I have a fortune / Project I want to entrust into your care. Please respond to me if you will promise to see that my last wish has been to accomplish the Glory of God and humanity.
I will be waiting to hear from you. God bless you Regards