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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- ",500,000" (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)
- "email@example.com" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Godwin Emefiele" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 20 Oct 2018 05:44:17 -0700
Subject: New Update Contract file number #/FGN/PTF/407/2018)# AV/NNPC/FNG?
Your overdue,contract Inheritance Lottery payment with contract file number #/FGN/PTF/407/2018)# AV/NNPC/FNG? Valued for USD25.5 Million has been released today
Following the mandate given to my office inline with the new Policy to fight corruption. I want to bring to your Notice that all Overdue Foreign contractors Payment should be Paid from 2000 till date your name and emails address was discovered as next on the list for payment of ($25,500,000.00) Million as directed by the President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria.
Reply immediately for more details to enable us pay you send your 1.Full Name 2.Residential Address 3.Age 4, Occupation 5. Direct Telephone Numbers for bank
transfer include your bank details as soon as you receive this email Your immediate respond is urgently Needed. Reply to firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr. Godwin Emefiele
Governor Central Bank