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:
- "from the desk of" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- ",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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "lagos" (a location commonly mentioned 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.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Nnamdi J Okonkwo" (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 15 Nov 2020 03:35:37 -0800
Subject: ARE YOU DEAD OR ALIVE REPLY FAST TODAY
FROM THE DESK OF: MR. NNAMDI J OKONKWO
THE EXECUTIVE MANAGING DIRECTOR,
INTERNATIONAL ONLINE REMITTANCE DEPARTMENT,
Address: No 2, Kofo Abayomi Street, PO Box 72439, Victoria Island, Lagos.
Motto: We are Fidelity, We Keep To Our Word.
Tel: + 234-908-681-9968
Urgent Attention: Beneficiary,
I am Mr. Nnamdi J. Okonkwo, The Chief Executive Managing Director of FIDELITY BANK OF NIGERIA PLC, LAGOS-NIGERIA. This morning an email was received by ONE Mr Casey Jackson who's Locations are: Cedar Park, TX Liberty Hill, TX USA, saying that you are dead and that you died of the deadly virus CORONA VIRUS on the 30th of July,2020 at 2:15 pm in Tx Health A&m Health Center, and that he's your relative and your business partner and representative and that you sent him to claim your fund with this FIDELITY BANK OF NIGERIA PLC in the total sum of $10,500,000.00 United State Dollars Only.
Below's the bank account information Mr Casey Jackson provided to us to wire the $10,500,00.00 United States Dollars to with ultimate request...
WELLS FARGO BANK
International wires: SWIFT code WFBIUDFM
Bank Address: 640 San Francisco , CA 84210 USA
Acct # 7704632480
Here comes the big question, ARE YOU DEAD OR ALIVE? Kindly respond to this email as soon as possible to enable us know the real status of things before we proceed further in remitting the fund to the above named person.
If we do not hear from you within 72 working days, that means we will remit the fund to the above claimed person Mr Casey Jackson who's Locations are: Cedar Park, TX Liberty Hill, TX USA,
Mr Nnamdi J. Okonkwo
Executive Managing Director: Fidelity Bank of Nigeria Plc
CC:FEDERAL MINISTRY OF FINANCE, FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA
CC:INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND AUTHORITY (I.M.F.A)
CC:UNITED NATIONS ORGANIZATION (U.N.O)