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:
- 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:
- "million united state dollars" (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)
- ",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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "email@example.com" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs.Maureen Howell" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 19 May 2022 15:53:31 +0100
Subject: Dearly Beloved In Christ..
Dearest in Christ,
Greetings to you.
I am Mrs.Maureen Howell I am sure this mail would be coming to you as a
surprise since we have never met before and you would also be asking
why I have decided to choose you amongst the numerous internet users
in the world, precisely I cannot say why I have chosen you but do not
be worried for I saw your profile on the Internet, which has made me
accomplish my request. May the almighty God bless and see you through
with this mission if you can carefully read and digest the message
Before I move further, permit me to give you a little of my biography,
I am Mother Maureen Howell, 67 Years old woman and the wife of Late Engineer.Fuhrmann
Howell who died alongside our only child in a Plane crash on
Monday the 7th of September 1998 GMT 14:22 UK while they were flying
from New York to Geneva. Please see the site below for more
After the death of my husband and son ,I became the Head of his
investment and just recently, the doctors handling my health issues at
Cancer center: Christie Hospital NHS Trust UK, have said I may not
live beyond the next two months after my next surgery,but before the
death of my husband we had a plan to use the last days of our lives to
donate half of what we have worked for to the less privilege and
charity homes and the other half for ourselves, family members and
close friends, and it is so unfortunate that my husband is not alive
today to do this with me and I am very weak with cancer and coupled
with the recent announcement from the doctor, hence I have decided to
do this philanthropic work on behalf of my late husband and I.
Presently, I have willed out almost half of our assets to several
charity homes and to some of the less privileged in different
countries. Despite the agreement between my late husband and I to give
aid to the deprived, we also agreed to render support to an individual
we have not met before in life due to the fact when we were still
young in life we received an anonymous help from an individual we did
not know and which we have not been able to know till date, the impact
we got from such gesture made us to do same.
I am sorry to inform you that you will never have the chance to know
me because I have just concluded the assignment which my husband and I
have agreed upon before his sudden death and you happened to be the
beneficiary of our last WILL, irrespective of your previous financial
status, hence I need you to do me a favor by accepting our offer.
I have presently instructed my bank manager to assist any person I
will introduce to him as the beneficiary to the last will in the sum
of Ten Million United State Dollars (10,000,000.00) with my bank in
Nigeria the FIRST INLAND BANK NIGERIA PLC. I decided to do this now
unconditionally knowing that my days are numbered.
To conclude with this bequest, please provide me with your Data to
fully which I will use to write a Letter of Authorization on your
behalf and send it to the bank as my new Next of Kin.
Direct telephone number:
Note: Please I do not want you to thank me, same gesture was shown to
us, all I need you to do is, When you get this fund, use %15 for
yourself and the rest to assist the less privileged in your community
and country,this is the only way to immortalize us when I am gone.
Reply me through my Private Email: email@example.com
Cancer Centre: Christie Hospital NHS Trust
(Manchester, UK) North West of England