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:
- "your urgent reply" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- This email message is a "dying widow" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs.Francisca Paul" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 21 Dec 2019 19:32:47 -0000
Subject: Greetings From Mrs.Hellen
Good Day My Dearest,
I am Mrs Francisca,married to late Mr. Paul Eddy, who was a wealthy business man in this country. Before sudden death we were devoted Christians when my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of $ 8.5m in one of the firm here in the country .
I am very sick from kidney cancer disease and I decided to donate this fund to a honest individual who will use this fund for god's works such as orphans, widows and building of churches to fulfill the vow I and my late husband made to God. I have chosen So after my deep thought because I do not have any child to inherit fund and I do not want to donate this fund to unbelievers because I do not want our hard earned money to be used in an ungodly ways.
As soon as I read from you I will give you more details on how to achieve this goal and get this fund transferred your bank account.
I need your urgent reply as I do not know what tomorrow will result.
your sister in the lord,