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.
Click here to report a problem with this page.
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:
- ",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)
- "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)
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr.Warren Buffett" <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 16 Oct 2021 04:01:18 -0700
Subject: Greetings You have been gifted $5 MILLION USD From Mr Bill Gates.
Contact me at this email for your claim: firstname.lastname@example.org
You have been gifted $5 MILLION USD donation fund. :pls u can
contact me with this Email. email@example.com
I hope this information meet you well as I know you will be curious to
know why/how I selected you to receive a cash sum of $5,000,000,00
USD, our information below is 100% legitimate, please see the link
My wife and I decided to donate the sum of $5,000,000,00 USD to you as
part of our charity project to improve the lot of 10 lucky individuals
all over the world from our $12 Billion Usd I and My Wife Mapped out
to help people before she died. We prayed and searched over the
internet for assistance because i saw your profile on Microsoft email
owners list and picked you. Susan my wife and i have decided to make
sure this is put on the internet for the world to see. my wife has
cancer and she died at colchester regional hospital, my wife just
didn't die but she was a great person and I miss her so much and this
is why I have decided to do one thing i promised her forever. as you
could see from the webpage above, am not getting any younger and you
can imagine having no much time to live. although am a Billionaire
investor and we have helped some charity organizations from our Fund.
You see after taken care of the needs of our immediate family members,
Before she died we decided to donate the remaining of our Billions to
other individuals around the world in need, the local fire department,
the red cross, Haiti, hospitals in truro where Susan underwent her
cancer treatment, and some other organizations in Asia and Europe that
fight cancer, alzheimer's and diabetes and the bulk of the funds
deposited with our payout bank of this charity donation. we have kept
just 40% of the entire sum to our self for the remaining days because
i am sick and am writing you from hospital computer because i dont
know when i will die.
To facilitate the payment process of the funds ($5,000,000.00 USD)
which have been donated solely to you, you are to send us
your full names.................
your contact address................
your personal telephone number...............
so that i can forward your payment information to you immediately. I
am hoping that you will be able to use the money wisely and
judiciously over there in your country. please you have to do you part
to also alleviate the level of poverty in your region, help as many
you can help once you have this money in your personal account because
that is the only objective of donating this money to you in the first
I like to re-assure you of the legitimacy of this services as we will
not be involved in any fraudulent act and will never be. use the money
wisely, we only want to feel good by helping people this time of the
year, this is the only thing that makes my wife happy too even now
that she is not here with me anymore, we have too much to give away as
I only have few months left on earth. I will advise as you as the
prospective lucky Person to be calm not to loose this great
opportunity which millions of people are trying to entangled but the
chances just couldn't come for them because a lot of people are out
there to discourage them as they don't know how it works, and have
never seen such before.
Thank you for accepting our offer, we are indeed grateful You Can
Google my name for more information: .
God bless you