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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Rev. James Pfebve" <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 19 Jun 2019 10:45:23 +0100
Subject: Greetings Beloved in Christ,
Beloved in Christ,
Please take your time to read this message; although we have never met
before, this is not spam. It's a real message sent to you. I know also that
you will be amazed at the level of trust that I am willing to place in a
person that I have never seen nor spoken with. My name is Rev.Fr.James
Pfebve ; I have been a catholic priest for over 27 years. I had a heart
surgery on the May 17, 2019 and the Doctors have just informed me that I
cannot live longer; I had a serious bleeding after the operation.
I have decided to give to you all the money which was deposited in my bank
account by a dying elderly woman in my congregation the total sum of
$4,972,000.00 ( Four million Nine Hundred and seventy Two Thousand Us
Dollars ) I want you to use this amount to make the world a better place
for the poor and less privileged, help the needy and also help your family
members.I took this decision because I was raised in an Orphanage so I
don't have relatives and I have been hospitalized for over 2 Years now
here in a private hospital in Madrid Spain where I am undergoing treatment.
That's why I have decided to contact you so that you can make good use of
the money which I WILL to you.
Please I want your sincere and urgent answer to know if you will be able to
execute this project, and I will give you more information on how the funds
would be transferred to your bank account.
I am waiting for your reply.
God bless you,