$10.5 Million Shell Oil Promo 419 Scam

“Crucial Reference” 419 Spam

Here’s a curious missive from the spam traps. 419 mails have occasionally delved into a  of hitmen and threats to get their hands on some cash (we’ll never forget you, Don Gunshot).

The fictitious entity below throws the “Random 419 scenario Generator” into overdrive and casually claims their husband was killed by an assassin alongside references to charities, cancer and a very large sum of money. The mail, titled “Crucial Reference”, reads as follows:

Good day,

Please I got your contact through an extensive search i did for a charity purpose, I want to entrust a donation to you for charitable project to handle on my behalf, I am diagnosed of Cancer 24months ago before the death of my late husband by assassin, and soon i will be undergoing surgical operation in due time which i pray to survive, and i want the philanthropist work which my late husband have been doing to continue, but because of my health condition i will not be able to carry out the work myself that is why i am willing to hand it over to you to do with the sum of $12,520,000.00 USD, to create shelter for widowers, less privilege and poor people in your community. I have earlier informed my lawyer about my decision willing the money to you for charitable purpose ONLY.


If you are interested sincerely, kindly contact my lawyer Mr. Ratha via Email Address: barristersoklengfirm@[removed] and call his Cellular phone number: ., ensure that you write my lawyer with my reference. SrA35/673/79gf/679.

Thanks for your understanding. Be blessed.

Yours Respectfully, Mrs. Tan K.C


Another one for the recycle bin, methinks. You’ll notice that in the above example, Gmail flags this one as a rogue message. With any luck some of the other free webmail providers will also snag it as a 419 attempt. While the bizarre reference to husband assassins is a little out there, it’s possible that some may still be taken in by the fabricated tales of shelter home assistance and charity work. Please let friends and family who you think could be at risk from something like this to be on their guard – at best, they’ll lose money. In the worst case scenario, they could become tangled up in money mule activities and that’s never a good thing to have happen.

Stay safe.

Christopher Boyd


Christopher Boyd

Former Director of Research at FaceTime Security Labs. He has a very particular set of skills. Skills that make him a nightmare for threats like you.