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:
- "million 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)
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
Fraud email example:
From: "Barrister Matty Allen" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 11 Jan 2021 02:27:42 -0800
Subject: RE: SWIFT CREDIT CARD PAYMENT
BARRISTER MATTY ALLEN
DIRECTOR FOREIGN OPERATION
DEPARTMENT ATM CARD
ECOBANK BANK OF NIGERIA
RE: SWIFT CREDIT CARD PAYMENT
AFTER EXTENSIVE CLOSE DOOR MEETING WITH BOARD OF DIRECTORS AND OTHER
STAKEHOLDERS IN THE GOVERNMENT INCLUDING SUBCOMMITTEES OF THE HOUSE OF
ASSEMBLY AND THE HOUSE OF REP FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA. IT WAS RESOLVED
AND AGREED UPON THAT YOUR FUND WOULD BE RELEASED ON A SPECIAL METHOD OF
PAYMENT, BY TAG NAME READS SWIFT CREDIT CARD.
THIS METHOD OF PAYMENT IS DESIGNED BY THE GOVERNMENT TO AVERT FRAUD
PERPETRATION OR STOPPAGE OF FUND BY SOME AGENCIES. EITHER THROUGH ANTI
TERRORIST CERTIFICATE OR OTHER CERTIFICATES. THIS SWIFT CREDIT CARD WOULD BE
ISSUED TO YOU AS SOON AS YOU RESPOND TO THIS EMAIL,THIS BANK HAS BEEN
MANDATED TO TAKE CHARGE OF THE ISSUANCE OF THE SWIFT CREDIT CARD AND YOUR
PAYMENT FILE SHOULD BE PASSED TO MY DESK FOR CLARIFICATION.
UPON CERTIFICATION THAT YOUR PAYMENT FILE IS OK, THIS OFFICE WILL DIRECT YOU
ON HOW TO RECEIVE YOUR OVER DUE FUND VIA ATM SWIFT CREDIT CARD. BUT PLEASE
NOTE THAT WE CANNOT BE ABLE TO PAY YOU THE FULL PAYMENT DUE TO INADEQUATE
FUND, WE WILL ONLY PAY YOU THE SUM OF $5 MILLION DOLLARS AS PART PAYMENT,
PLEASE BEAR WITH US AND WE PROMISE TO MAKE AN ARRANGEMENT FOR YOUR REMAINING
PAYMENT IN 5MONTHS TIMEIN THE LIGHT OF THIS AFOREMENTIONED, YOU ARE REQUIRED
TO FURNISH THIS OFFICE WITH THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION:
YOUR FULL NAME:
NEXT OF KIN NAME:
DATE OF BIRTH:
YOUR TELEPHONE NUMBER:
THE CARD WOULD BE ISSUED IN YOUR FAVOUR, AND ALL YOUR INFORMATION WILL
BEINSERTED INTO THE CARD. UPON COMPLETION OF THIS ISSUANCE OF THE CREDIT
CARD, IT WOULD BE SEND TO YOU TOGETHER WITH THE ACCESS PIN NUMBER VIA
COURIER TO YOUR RESIDENTIAL ADDRESS.
BARRISTER MATTY ALLEN
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