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:
- 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)
- ",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)
- "00,000.00" (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)
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (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.
Fraud email example:
From: "Ms.Helen Clark" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 23 Jul 2021 23:42:53 +0200
Subject: Re: UNITED NATIONS.REFERENCE PAYMENT CODE: 8525595
UNITED NATIONS OVERDUE COMPENSATION UNIT.
REFERENCE PAYMENT CODE: 8525595
BAILOUT AMOUNT: $8,500,000.00 USD
This is to bring to your notice that I am a delegate from the United Nations to The IMF (International Monetary Fund) United States Regional Payment Office to pay 20 scam victims $8,500,000.00 USD (Eight Million Dollars only) each.
You are listed and approved for this payment as one of the scammed victims to be paid this amount,respond to this mail as soon as possible for the immediate payments of your $8,500,000.00 USD compensations funds.
You are to send your information as soon as possible.
DATE OF BIRTH:
CONTACT OUR PAYMENT OFFICER
Name: LARRY SMITH
Please you are advice to stop any communication with any person or Body that you are currently paying money to due to transaction which you have online with the person.
Please let us know right now via email or telephone your present dealing online, so we can help you verify the authenticity of the transaction which you are presently involved in, so you don't get scammed.
Please also send me proof of payment in any previous scam If you still have any (optional).
I shall feed you with further modalities as soon as I hear from you.
United Nation Representative.