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:
- "million us 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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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: Richael Smith <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 20 Oct 2018 10:30:17 +0300
My Dearest Friend,
I hope you still remember me .This is to thank you for your past effort
and kind assistance. The money sum of 4.8 Million US dollars belonging
to my late parents has been transferred into an account provided by a
newly found business partner of mine from Sweden. I wish to compensate
you for your past assistance, effort and commitments that time to help
me out . I have deposited US$200,000. 00 with Merchant Investment Bank
PlC in Ivory Coast , I am in Switzerland right now to establish some
business and possibly buy some properties also.
So I want you to Contact my Pastor who is currently on a mission in
Ivory Coast ,Rev.Dr. Craig Bentley on his information below, because he
will be the one that will assist you to have the fund transferred to
your bank account or help you to receive the fund As ATM card or Bank
Name:Rev.Dr. Craig Bentley
Email address: ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
Phone Number: +22566111431
I left every instruction with him to assist you and have the bank wire
the fund to you as soon as you contact him, so make sure you re-confirm
Your home address..................
Your Cell Phone Number...........
The Above infor will enable him to recognize you.
With All My
Mrs Richael Smith.