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:
- "from the desk of" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "waiting for your urgent response" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "executive governor" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- "central bank of nigeria" (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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 29 Mar 2021 01:13:43 +0100
Subject: INSTRUCTION TO CREDIT YOUR ACCOUNT 1
FROM THE DESK OF THE EXECUTIVE GOVERNOR
CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA(CBN)
HOW ARE YOU TODAY? WE ARE WRITING TO INFORM YOU THAT WE HAVE
RECEIVED YOUR PROMPT REPLY TO OUR CORRESPONDENCE TO WIRE YOUR
PAYMENT INTO YOUR DESIGNATED BANK ACCOUNT
PLEASE BE INFORMED THAT YOU ARE HEREBY ADVISED URGENTLY TO
FORWARD YOUR FULL BANK PARTICULARS WHERE YOU WANT YOUR FUND TO
BE PAID INTO, TO US NOT LATER THAN TODAY, TO ENABLE US FINALIZE
THE ARRANGEMENT OF YOUR PAYING $22.9M EACH, HAVE BEEN
PROGRAMMED TO 10 CONTRACTORS WHICH YOU ARE AMONG TO BE PAID IN
THIS QUARTER PAYMENT SCHEDULED BY THE NEWLY CONSTITUTED GOVERNMENT.
YOUR FULL NAME AND ADDRESS:
BANK NAME :
BANK ADDRESS :
ACCOUNT NO :
YOUR INTERNATIONAL PASSPORT OR ANY OF YOUR ID
AS SOON AS WE RECEIVE YOUR BANKING CO-ORDINATES FROM YOU TODAY,I
WILL CALL YOU ON YOUR PHONE TO DISCUSS WITH YOU CONCERNING YOUR
WIRE PAYMENT INTO YOUR ACCOUNT.
WAITING FOR YOUR URGENT RESPONSE AS WE RECEIVE YOUR BANK
INFORMATION TO PAY YOU.MEAN WHILE FORWARD YOUR TELEPHONE NUMBER
TO ME FOR EASY COMMUNICATION.
PLEASE REPLY TO : firstname.lastname@example.org
CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA (CB N)
Bank Code: 101