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: "Mrs.Rosa Gomes" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 17 Apr 2020 14:09:45 -0700
Subject: I need to hear from you ''
Life is gradually passing away from me as a result of my present medical condition and my personal doctor confided in me yesterday that
I have only but few more weeks to live.
In view of this setback, I want to donate my estate for humanitarian assistance, since this has always been the plan of my late husband and
besides I have no child.
In an effort to compliment the good work of God almighty and the wish of my late Husband I donate the sum of $2,847,000.00 (Two Million
Eight Hundred and Forty Seven Thousand United States Dollars) to you.
On your acknowledgment of this mail and informing me of your nationality and current place of resident, my Bank will facilitate due
processes for transfer of this legacy to you.
May God bless you as you use this money judiciously for the work of charity.