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.
- 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.
- 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: "MRS. GRACE ALLEN" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 17 Apr 2020 04:13:25 +0100
Subject: I'M A CANCER WOMAN HELP ME
Attn: Beloved friend,
My quest to locate a responsible friend and partner to bring my dreams to a reality, hence l took this bold step to contact you through this medium and i would not like you to take an offence that l am bothering you since you do not know me neither have we met before.
I am Mrs. Grace Allen from United States; I am married to James Allen who worked with United States embassy in Germany for nine years, before he died in the year 2015. We were both married for seventeen years without a child. He died after a brief illness that lasted for only four days. Before his death we were both involved in charity services. Since his death I decided not to re-marry or get a child outside my matrimonial home which is against my principle.
When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of $5.5 million (Five Million Five Hundred Thousand U.S. Dollars) with the HSBC BANK in Canada. Presently, this money is still invested in this Bank.
Recently, my doctor told me that I would not last for the next Six months due to my cancer problem. Though what disturbs me most is my stroke sickness. Having known my condition of health I have decided to donate this fund to an individual that will utilize this money the way I am going to instruct here in. I want an individual that will use these fund-to-fund charity, orphanages and widows and to ensure that these set of people are well maintained.
I took this decision because I don't have any child that will inherit this money and my husband relatives are well of and I don't want my husband's hard earned money to be misused by them. As I do not want a situation whereby this money will be used in an ungodly manner, Hence the reasons for taking this bold decision. I am not afraid of death because l lived a fulfilled life. As it is right now, I don't need any telephone communication because of my health and also due to the presence of my husband's relatives around me always. I don't want them to know about this development which i want you to contact of my Attorney David Turner on his phone number 754-206-0863. or contact him on his email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Finally, My Attorney David Turner will issue you a letter of authority that will prove you as the original-beneficiary of this said fund. I want you to see to the need of the less privileged. My happiness is that I lived a fulfilled life and doesnt have any regrets in life. Please note that any delay in your reply will give me room in sourcing for another individual as I stated here in. Hope to hear from you soonest and do notify your interest to help me.
MRS. GRACE ALLEN.