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 "dying widow" scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs.Rabe M" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 14 Apr 2023 16:06:09 +0100
Subject: Dear God Select
Dear God Select
I am writing this mail to you with heavy tears In my eyes and great
sorrow in my heart, My Name is Mrs.Rabe Maxi, and I am contacting you
my country Tunisia I want to tell you this because I dont have any
other option than to tell you as I was touched to open up to you, I
married to Mr.Willam Brown who worked with Tunisia Embassy in Burkina
Faso for nine years before he died in the year 2012.We were married
for eleven years without a child.
He died after a brief illness that lasted for only five days. Since
his death I decided not to remarry, When my late husband was alive he
deposited the sum of US$ 15.5M (Fifteen Million Five hundred Thousand
Dollars) in a bank in Ouagadougou the capital city of Burkina Faso in
west Africa Presently this money is still in bank. He made this money
available for exportation of ( Gold, Zinc, Copper ) from Burkina Faso
Recently, My Doctor told me that I would not last for the period of
seven months due to cancer problem. The one that disturbs me most is
my stroke sickness .Having known my condition I decided to hand you
over this money to take care of the less-privileged people, you will
utilize this money the way I am going to instruct here.
I want you to take 40 Percent of the total money for your personal use
While 60% of the money will go to charity" people in the street and
helping the orphanage. I grew up as an Orphan and I dont have any body
as my family member, just to endeavor that the house of God is
maintained. Am doing this so that God will forgive my sins and accept
my soul because these sicknesses have suffered me so much.
As soon a s I receive your reply I shall give you the contact of the
bank in Burkina Faso and I will also instruct the Bank Manger to issue
you an authority letter that will prove you the present beneficiary of
the money in the bank that is if you assure me that you will act
accordingly as I Stated herein
I am wating to hear from your
Many Our Lord Almigthy be with you