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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "remain blessed" (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- This email message is a "dying widow" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: Vida Kuzman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 16 Jun 2022 09:54:45 +0000
Subject: LETTER FROM HOSPITAL
I am Mrs. Vida Kuzman, From United States living in CÃ´te D'Ivoire,I write
to relate to you my intention to use my money ($2.5 Million USD) for
charity work in your country. I was married to the late Kuzman Matej who
was a contractor with the Government of Cote d'Ivoire before he died after
a few days in the hospital. I need an honest and Faithful person that can
use these funds for humanity's work.
I want you to use 70% of this funds for orphanages, school and church,
widows, propagating the word and other humanitarian works,The remaining 30%
should be yours for your efforts as the new beneficiary
I took this decision because I don't have any child that will inherit this
money and I don't want a situation where this money will be used in an
ungodly way. That is why I am taking this decision, and my doctor has
confirmed to me that I have less than two weeks to live, having known my
condition I decided to donate this fund to a charity or individual
As soon as I have received your response, I will give you further
directives on how you are to go about the claims of the said funds.
Mrs. Vida Kuzman