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: Lillian John <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2022 14:40:32 +0000
Urgent from hospital
I am Mrs Lillian John a widow suffering from long time illness
(Cancer) writing from a hospital here in Ivory Coast, there is funds I
inherited from my late husband Mr Lakic John, the sum of ($7.8
million) which he kept in a bank before his death, I need a honest
person that can use these funds for humanitarian work. I want to
donate this money to be used to assist the poor and needy, the less
privileges, the widows and the sick in the society, If you are ready
to carry out this missionary work, kindly get back to me.
Yours beloved sister,
Mrs. Lillian John.