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:
- 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:
- "claims office" (real lotteries do not use a "claim agent" / "fiduciary agent")
- This email message is a fake lottery scam. Consider the following facts about real lotteries:
- They don't notify winners by email.
- You can't win without first buying a lottery ticket.
- They don't randomly select email addresses to award prizes to.
- They don't use free email accounts (Yahoo, Hotmail, etc) to communicate with you.
- They don't tell you to call a mobile phone number.
- They don't tell you to keep your winnings secret.
- They will never ask a winner to pay any fees to receive a prize!
Fraud email example:
From: "Euro Millions" <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 15 Feb 2021 10:17:01 -0800
Subject: Congratulation: You're a winner!
With reference to the 1,377th EuroMillions draw which took place on Tuesday 1st December 2020 at 21:00 CEST (20:00 BST) and the winning numbers drawn were:
Lucky numbers 14-20-29-47-49 Star Number 4-12 Millionaire Maker: MNHF52876 serial number ZWWD49193 Prize credited to file EURO/86169/2021
An official letter was sent to your address. Your email address has been awarded the sum of 2,713,908.40 GB pounds. Kindly, confirm receipt of this notification by contacting your claims officer Mr. Kennith William for more details.
visit the link https://www.euro-millions.com/results/01-12-2020 to view your winning details as published on the Euro-Millions site.
Euro-Millions prizes must be claimed within 180 days of the draw date. This is a confidential mail sent to ONLY winners of this draws.
If you have any questions, please contact our customer support.
UK Regional Office
Acorns Oakwood Park Business Center
Fountains Road Bishop Thornton, Harrogate
HG3 3BF, UK.