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. Mai Hynoi" <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 9 Sep 2022 06:12:34 -0700
Subject: Re.With warm hearts I offer my friendship and my greetings
With warm hearts I offer my friendship and my greetings
I am sincerely seeking your confidence in this matter which I propose with my free mind and as a woman of integrity. My name is Mrs. Mai Hynoi , Iím from Vietnam. I am terminally ill and have decided to donate my inheritance I got from my late husband to you for a charity project in your town, When my late husband was alive, he deposited the sum of US383Million in my Bank. I have been diagnosed with acute cancer for about 2 years now. From all indications my condition is really deteriorating and my doctors have courageously advised me that I may not live all that long; this is because the cancer has reached a critical stage.
I shall be undergoing major operations in less than two weeks from now. If you are sure that you will use the donated fund as I have advised here,
Get back to me for more details.
Thanks and kind regards.
Mrs. Mai Hynoi