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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- ",500,000" (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)
- "00,000.00" (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)
- "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: "Thepoor" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 03 Oct 2018 13:02:45 +0200
Subject: kindly reply me here (email@example.com).
>From Mrs. Sandra Guessan,
I am touched by God to hand you over this money considering my last
wish, and you should also know that my contact to you is by special
grace of God, please understand that you are not helping me rather you
are working for God the creator of heaven and earth.
An aging widow suffering from long time illness. i am currently admitted
in a privet hospital in the country, I have some funds I inherited from
my late loving husband Mr. Guessan Martin, the sum of ($8,500,000.00
USD)Â which he deposited in BANK Here and I need a very honest and God
fearing Christian that can use this funds for God's work.
I want you and the church to always pray for me because the lord is my
shepherd. My happiness is that I lived a life of a worthy Christian and
whoever that wants to serve the Lord must serve him in spirit and Truth.
Please if you would be able to use these funds for the Lord's work
kindly reply me here (firstname.lastname@example.org). Donât forget to
always pray for me because all my hope to survive is in God the creator
who holds death and life.
Hoping to receive your reply.
Mrs. Sandra Guessan.