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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "hundred thousand united states 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)
- "my names are " (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- 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: "Choi" <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 28 Nov 20 15:27:58 GMT
MOTENGHAI BANK (HK) PLC.
FLOOR 19, OLYMPIAN CITY,
11 HOI FAI ROAD,
WEST KOWLOON. HONGKONG.
Greetings, My names are Mr. Choi Teng, and I am the CEO and MD of Motenghai Bank (HK) Plc.
I have a business proposal, I want to talk to you about a late client of this bank,
a VIP customer from Italy, and an Italian drug lord who died leaving behind a dormant
bank account containing (US$5,000,200,000) Five Billion two hundred thousand United States dollars
in bank account number: 8230110791. And he did not register a next of kin so since he died over
the past (years), none of his family member contacted the bank to claim his fund and I want you
to come forward to claim the money and I want only 30% share of the total amount (US$5,000,200,000)
from you after. If you are interrested, please contact me for more details.
DATE OF BIRTH:
Contact me on email address for more details: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr. Choi Teng,
CEO/ MD, Motenghai Bank (HK) Plc.