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:
- "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)
- 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: "REV. DR. TONY JOHNSON" <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 12 Apr 2021 15:38:43 -0700
Subject: TNT GLOBAL DELIVERY COMPANY AMT
TNT GLOBAL DELIVERY COMPANY AMT
Address: agboku Grace Plaza,
Victoria Ireland Benin republice
Good day to you, this is the second notice we are sending to you in
regards to your ATM visa card left here in our office, we notified you
about this few weeks ago but we havenât heard from you up till this
moment. Many other packages, which we are supposed to deliver together
with yours had already been delivered to their various owners and yet
yours is still here in our company.
You can check on our website track with The written numbers below and
see those whom we have already delivered; they all have received their
shipments in a good condition. Tracking number: 415459624 ( already
delivered ) This is the evidence of the shipments we have already made
safely and no complain. Today we brought out some packages abandon
here in our office, so that is where we found yours sealed in an
envelope. We opened this all to find out is an ATM card.
Attached to this, is a letter sealed in the same envelope stating that
this card worth the sum of US$15.8 million Dollars also that it has
already been activated for use. Reading down on this letter, which
explains that the pin numbers of the card will not be giving to any
other person but you and it has to be from the UBA Bank which
issued this card.
Get back to me with the following information to commence the shipment
of atm visa card
(1)Your Full Name
(2)Mobile Phone Number
(3)Current Home Address
(7)Private email for further communications
I wait for your urgent response. Thanks and remain bless
REV. DR. TONY JOHNSON
E-mail ( firstname.lastname@example.org )