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 united state 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)
- ",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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "ecowas " (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: Mrs Rose Johnson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 5 Sep 2020 13:48:51 +0100
Subject: YOUR ATM CARD PACKAGE $7,5MILLION IS AVAILABLE NOW
YOUR ATM CARD PACKAGE $7,5MILLION IS AVAILABLE NOW
The conduct which is (ATM-0411) so you have to show this code when
contacting the card centar by using it as the subject,This is DHL
courier Delivery Company of Benin,the management of this
company,wishes to inform you that,we received a parcel containing an
ATM Master Card valued $7.500,000 Million USD with the vital PIN on it
from the ecowas for safety delivery to your residential address in
your country.This parcel was brought to us this morning by the IMF
Package ATM Card office, please reconfirm the below information,to
avoid delivery of your ATM Master Card to wrong hand.This is to
officially inform you that you have won $7,500,000 million United
State Dollars in the World Bank poverty alleviation program and it has
been credited into ATM VISA CARD by the issuing Bank as ordered by
this Federal Ministry of Finance, Payment Reconciliation Panel,office
of the Presidency Benin.
1) Your Full Name:..
2) Address, City, State And Country:..
3) Personal Cell Phone, Fax And Mobile:...
4) Company Name (If Any) Position And Address:..
5) Occupation, Age And Marital Status:..
6) Copy Of Your Int'l Passport/Drivers Licence:..
Send Your Require information via Email Address ( email@example.com )
MR DAVID MORRIS.
Calling Number Tel.+229-68542895
We will register your package and send you the tracking numbers
beforewe proceed for safety delivery of your package as soon as you
reconfirm the required information for safety delivery.Send your
require information via Email Address ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
SHIPMENT CODE GJK72DWQ
PACKAGE REGISTERED CODE NO OVX950.
SECURITY CODE EYTU/3055WEZ/263/
TRANSACTION CODE 7126/JLFS/7138/17305/
CERTIFICATE DEPOSIT CODE MCBS/PQLE/2-6/41
ATM Master Card contents $7,500,000 Million.
DHL is one of the world's great success stories,the start-up that
revolutionized the delivery of packages and information.In the past
33years,we've grown up and grown into a diverse family of companies as
DHL that's bigger,stronger, better than ever.
Mrs Rose Johnson