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 united states 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)
- "million us 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)
- "dear beneficiary," (this SPAM email was probably sent to thousands of people)
- "courier service" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- "email@example.com" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- 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.
Fraud email example:
From: "UN" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 28 Jun 2021 04:45:21 -0700
Subject: your Reference No: UN/SA77/2021
UNITED NATIONS ORGANIZATION FINANCIAL REGULATORY OFFICE
METRO PARK BUILDING, 351 FRANCIS BAARD STREET, PRETORIA, SOUTH AFRICA.
COMPENSATION PAYMENT OF $3,000.000.00 THREE MILLION US DOLLARS VIA BANK TO BANK TRANSFER OR ATM CARD
NOTE: That Your Email Address Has Been Listed As One Of The Beneficiaries To Claim The Sum of $3,000.000.00 Three Million United States Dollars From United Nations Compensation Fund Payment.
We have actually been authorized by the newly appointed Minister of finance and the governing body of the United Nations Monetary Unit to investigate the unnecessary delay on your payment, recommended and approved in your favour. During the course of our investigation, we discovered with dismay that your payment has been unnecessarily delayed by corrupt officials of the Bank in attempt to swindle your fund which has led to so many losses from your end and unnecessary delay in the receipt of your payment.
The United Nations and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has chosen to pay out all the compensation funds to 1000 Beneficiaries all over the world through ATM Card as this is a global payments technology that enables consumers, businesses, financial institutions and governments to use digital currency.Your Email Address was attached to Reference No: UN/SA77/2021
We have arranged your payment to be paid to you through Bank to bank transfer or ATM Card and this will be issued on your Name and shall be posted directly to your address via DHL or any courier services available in your country. Upon your contact with us, the sum of $3,000.000.00 Three Million United States Dollars only will be credited into Bank account or ATM Card this will enable you to withdraw your funds in any ATM Machines in your country.
To claim Your Fund you are to contact and send the requested information to Processing Payment Agent with the followings with your Reference No: UN/SA77/2021
1.Your Full Name:
2. Reference No:
3.Your Postal or Residential Address:
Kindly furnish the above information and your Reference No to our Paying Agent below for the issuance and delivery of your ATM Card or Bank to bank transfer
Payment Processing Center SA
Fax Number: +27-86-232-6692
Congratulations. We required your urgent response to this email as directed to avoid further delay.
Mr. Leonard Blavatnik
Public Information Officer
Regional Office South Africa