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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "with your full names" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "hundred thousand united states 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)
- "confidential business" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- "is highly confidential" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
- 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: Mrs.Graca Machel mandela <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 14 Apr 2023 13:19:06 +0000
Subject: THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT,PLEASE DO NOT IGNORE.
Good day and how are you?
With due respect, I must apologize for this unsolicited message, I am aware that this is certainly not a conventional way of approaching an unknown person for the establishment of a project and investment.
But I respectfully insist you read this message carefully before you either take a decision of proceeding or deleting my message as I am optimistic it will be successful for unimaginable financial benefit for both of us.
I am Mrs. Graca Machel Mandela the wife of south African icon and freedom fighter late Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela The former President of South Africa From 1994 till1999 who died on December 5th, 2013 after a protracted lung infection contacted during his 27th years of incarceration in Robben island prison. I managed to get your contact details online here in Johannesburg South Africa in my desperate search for a trustworthy person to assist me in this confidential business transaction.
As the Third wife of late Nelson Mandela, he deposited cash in a trust account on my name here in south Africa for self keeping , he did this because he knew that upon his death ,his lioness ex-wife Winnie Mandela who died few years ago and her daughter Zindzi who died recently of Covid-19 will deny me of this fund.
Now Winnie and Zenani are no more, I'm very afraid of her other daughter by name Zenani who is still alive might now will use all her structural contacts within the AFRICAN NATIONAL CONGRESS [ANC] to deny me what is due to me as his wife who looked after him all this period he has being on sick bed.
As his instinct preinformed him, his fears is ongoing ,as a Mozambican ,all the family members have swooped on me Opposing me that I should hand over the asset to them, and good a thing that when my late husband deposited the money into the trust fund account on my hand we used my sons name , who is currently living here in Johannesburg South Africa, for security reason.
My late husband, Nelson Mandela, deposited US$60.5 MILLIONS (Sixty Millions, Five Hundred Thousand United States Dollars) in cash in a bank here in South Africa through diplomatic channel, After his death, I and my son being in Johannesburg,
South Africa, decided to transfer this money out of South Africa for my family use since it is the only confidential thing we benefited from. I have relinquished and waved most of his assets /estate willed to me as we are married in the community of property for the interest of peace .
This is genuine and not of criminal origin. I must then emphasize that this transaction is highly confidential and is to be kept as such.
Therefore indicate your full interest in assurance of trust, so that we can actualize this great opportunity together and share the benefit together by the help of God. and in the area you are not interested in this deal please kindly delete it immediately from your email. If interested , Kindly provide me with your full names, private phone. Contact me directly on this email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs Graca Machel
Please Call me on this Telephone number: +27833398434