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:
- "money gram" (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "huge amount of money" (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)
- ",500,000" (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)
- "(ecowas)" (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: Mr Mohamed Usman <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 13 Jul 2021 19:28:09 +0100
Subject: Attention,Dear Mail Address Owner
Attention,Dear Mail Address Owner,
How are you today? I am Mr Mohamed Usman a delegate from the united
nation office regrade of your Fund,your name and your email address is
listed Three person to paid Win VICTIMS Compensation fund $4,500,000
million each and your Name and your mail address is listed approved to
pay the Compensation fund,Mr Roy Martin said you have sent them to
claim the fund as next of kins of the fund and He forwarded us address
below to send the fund $4,500,000 million on your behalf to them? are
you where of this person? or do you want person to claim your payment?
get back to us immediately to avoiding release your payment fund to
Name..Mr Roy Martin
ADDRESS..1121 Odena RD Sylacauga,AL - Florida 35150
Do you sent any person to claim your fund or not?i am writing to let
you know if this is true or not.edited in this transfer is $4,500,000
million and is a huge amount of money and this man is getting us
confusing on what he is saying.We wish to inform you that United
Nation and the (ECOWAS) have instructed us to send you the sum of
$4,500,000 million.from your winning VICTIMS Compensation fund,$7000
dollar will sent to you twice daily $14,000 dollar through Money Gram
office as first collection of which you will be recovering every day
until the total sum of $4,500,000 million is completely transfer to
This is the final notice you are going to receive the payment from
Money Gram office,do you get me? I hope you understand how many times
this message has been sent to you or are you not ready to receive your
fund? Which have been mapped to your name today,moreover reconfirm
your full information to the Money GRAM office to pick up your first
payment of $7000 dollar daily without delay,Contact Money Gram Agent (
Mr Tony Brawn ): on this Tel:+: +2296934730.
Kindly Contact Money Gram Agent:
( Mr Tony Brawn )
Reply To This Email: ((( firstname.lastname@example.org ))).
Preferred Payment Method
As result of the information we got I told them to wait until I hear
from you today or tomorrow,to know if you are still interested or not
to receive this fund.lets release your full Reference of your $7000
installment once we confirm your informations as soon as you receive
this message response.
FULL CONTACT ADDRESS:.........
MOBILE PHONE NUMBER:............
MARITAL STATUS AND AGE:......
Mr Mohamed Usman.