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:
- "abidjan" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Mary clement <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 3 Apr 2021 14:55:02 +0000
Subject: Mrs Mary .C. Hello
Greetings, my dear
I am writing you base on your good profile. I am in search of a
property to buy in your country; I intended to come over to your
country for investment? I believe that I have to partner with a
citizen to be safe in investing in your country. My name is Mrs mary
Clement Edoh, My late husband deals on Crude Oil with Federal
Government of Sudan and we have a personal Oil firm in Bentiu Oil zone
town and Upper Nile city.
What I have experience physically, I don't wish to experience it again
in my life due to the recent civil and Ethnic crises caused by our
President Mr. Salva Kiir and the rebel leader Mr. Riek Machar, I have
been Under United Nation refugee camp in Chad to save my life and that
of my little daughter.
I want to solicit for your partnership with trust to transfer and
invest the sum of ($5.5 million USD) Five Million Five Hundred
Thousand USD, deposited by my late husband in Cote d'ivoire to your
country, because my life is no longer safe in our country, since the
rebels are looking for the families of all the oil business men in the
country to kill, saying that they are the people that is milking the
Though, I do not know how you will feel to my proposal, but the truth
is that I sneaked into Chad our neighboring country where I am living
now as a refugee. I escaped with my little daughter when the rebels
bust into our house and killed my husband as one of the big oil
dealers in the country, ever since then, I have being on the run. I
left my country and move to Chad our neighboring country with the
little ceasefire we had, due to the face to face peace meeting accord
coordinated by the former US Secretary of State, and United Nations in
Ethiopia (Addis Ababa) between our President Mr. Salva Kiir and the
rebel leader Mr Riek Machar to stop this war.
I will send you the document of the fund with other details for your
acknowledgement and prove. I will wait to hear from you so as to give
you details. Meanwhile I'm preparing my documents to be transfer to
Abidjan in Cote d'ivoire were I can discuss of this fund in one of the
I will wait your response
With love from
Mrs Mary Edoh