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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "million united state 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)
- ",000,000" (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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "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.
- 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: "Mr. Charles Kingsley" (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 20 May 2018 23:37:29 -0700
Subject: Dearly Beloved,
I am Mr Charles Kingsley ,I was married to Mrs. Sara, an executive staff who has worked with Chevron/Texaco in the Thailand for twenty years before she died in the year 2013 during the Spanish train crash which took her away from me. Check the link below for news info on(edition.cnn.com/2013/07/30/world/europe/spain-train-crash) Before this tragedy the sum of $9,000,000 Million (Nine Million United State Dollars) was officially deposited with a Bank long ago before the death of my wife and we both work for this money.
Currently I'am undergoing severe ailment and close medical treatment, and my Doctor told me that I have limited days to live due to the problems I'am suffering from. At this moment I want to use this funds to upkeep all widows and charities homes worldwide. I need reputable and God fearing person who will use above mention fund as instructed, but not to divert it to personal use please.
I need total commitment from you in making 70% donate of this funds to charity Homes, and i will instruct you on the logistics process with 30% balance in your progressive effort on this work. Because I don't know what tomorrow will be due to my current health status.I took this decision because I do not have any child that will inherit this money. But total commitment from you and I will present you before the finance house with details and official documentations to process this fund release to you. In This Faith i need your great effort to accomplish this work only my health issue is my problem now and my doctor will not allow me to leave the hospital.
Remember that this fund is mainly for widows, charities and other related humanitarian services please. In order to avoid breach of law.
Thanks for your effort,
Mr Charles Kingsley