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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "dear sir/madam" (a standard Nigerian greeting phrase)
- "accredited attorney" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "cotonou" (a location commonly mentioned 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.
- email@example.com (AOL; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: t man <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 3 May 2021 12:50:17 +0100
Subject: Attention Beneficiary;
Eco-bank in Benin
Address: BP 1280, Rue du Gouverneur Bayol,
01 Cotonou, Benin
Phone: +229 9862-72299 Fax: +1 (713) 999-7819
I wish to acknowledge the receipt of your email, yes, the sum of
$5.2Mlln USD only with the deposit code RBK/FGN/PYT/5446-6890 was
transferred here by Benin Republic authority for payment to you after
Really, we are ready to get the funds to you through online banking
transfer as mandated. You are requested to forward your Your full,
Country, City, home/office address, Cell phone number, Occupation, Age
and copy of your identification immediately for an immediate
procedures and releasing of your fund to you today.
We shall set up online account here with your name, and then credit
the $5.2 Million for onward transfer to your local bank account after
Be inform that after creating the online account, there will be an
administration fee to be settle to the accredited Attorney that will
sign Funds Release Order Documents on your behalf, to empower us to
issue you Transfer Security Code that will enable you to commence
transfer from the account from any part of the world.
Awaiting the above requested information immediately. Good night
Mr. Edwin Egoamaka Gabriel.
Account Officer, Regions Bank, Cotonou, Benin.
Tel: +1 (713) 999-7819 (Voice call/Text message)