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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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:
- "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)
- "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)
- 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. Elizabeth Johnson" <ElisJohnson@verizon.net>
Date: Mon, 10 Jul 2023 18:33:57 +0200
Subject: I Trust You My Dear174
My Beloved Friend in the Lord.
Greetings in the name of our Lord. I am Mrs. Elizabeth A. Johnson from Republic of South Africa Actually I was married to late Doctor. A. Johnson. l am 51 years old and a believer in the almighty God, although I am suffering from long term cancer of the breast and from all indication my condition is really deteriorating and it is quite obvious that I might not live more than three (3) months, according to my doctor because the cancer has gotten to a very worst and dangerous stage of four (4).
My late husband and my only child died five years ago, his death was politically motivated. My late husband was a very rich and wealthy business man who was running his Gold/Diamond Business here in South Africa and he also worked as a security contactor for the US embassy in South Africa here, so you have nothing to worry about the safety and security of the business and fund donations to you. Meanwhile, After his death, I inherited all his business and wealth, and right now my doctors have advised me that I may not live for more than three (3) months, due to diagnosis of the CANCER; so I have urgently decided to divide the part of this wealth, for the help of theless-privilegedandhomelessandold agepeople as well as theneedyin your country and other countries of your choice around the world of which you will be responsible in taking care of the disbursement and sharing of this mon
Yes my dear, I got your email address during my desperate I search on the internet and I prayed to God almighty to send an honest person who can assist me to fulfill my wish here on earth before anything happen to me due to this illness of cancer.
I decided to donate the sum of $5,600,000.00 USD (Five Million Six hundred thousand United States dollars) to the less privileged because I cannot take this money to the grave. Please I want you to note that this fund is lodged in a bank here in South Africa.
Once I hear from you, I will forward to you all the information's you will use to get this fund released from the bank here in South Africa and to be transferred to your bank account. I honestly pray that this money when transferred to you will be used for the said purpose because l have come to find out that wealth acquisition without the great and God almighty is vanity.
May the grace of God be with you and your family as I urgently wait to hear from you.
Please reply only if you are interested and willing to help me in this Godly good work of Charity.
Here is my email address and phone number
Thanks and God bless you.
Yours Beloved Sister
Mrs. Elizabeth Johnson