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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "from the desk of" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "huge sum 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)
- "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)
- ",000,000" (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)
- "abuja" (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 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 (Yahoo, Japan; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: African Development Bank Group <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 16 Aug 2021 23:31:00 +0100
Subject: VERIFICATION OF YOUR OVERDUE FUND
From the Desk of Mr. Akinwumi Adesina.
African Development Bank Group.(www.afdb.org)
Plot 813, Lake Chad Crescent,
Maitama District, Abuja-Nigeria
VERIFICATION OF YOUR OVERDUE FUND
I am Mr. Akinwumi Adesina, the President, African Development Bank Group.
This is to bring to your notice that my office has taken over all the
money transactions originated from any part of Africa and European
countries as contract payment, Fund Inheritance or Lottery Winning due
to Unauthorized/incapability of financial Institutions/security
companies in releasing such huge sum of money due to Fraud, terrorism
and money Laundry activities going on world wide.
The World Bank Group has Mandated the African Development Bank (afdb)
by my Office to release funds to beneficiaries through a means
preferable by the beneficiary, Hence Your Name appears as one of The
fund beneficiaries whom their fund was successfully cleared for
Your money will be released to you through any means preferable by you
either by the below options. (1) through online banking transfer or
(2) Payment through delivery of an ATM CARD (3) Through Bank to Bank
wire transfer to avoid paying excess charges. You are requested to
re-confirm the below information proving you the bonafide beneficiary.
Kindly get back to me via email@example.com
(1.) Your Full Name:
(2.) Your Country of Origin:
(3.) Your Direct Phone Number:
(4.) Driver's License
(5.) Your Valid Passport ID:
(6.) Your Residence Home Address:
You are therefore advised to re-confirm or direct us for immediate
release of your money, Most importantly be aware that (Five Million
United States Dollars (US$5,000,000.00) Only was allocated to you as
the approved amount due to you.
Mr. Akinwumi Adesina.
President, African Development Bank.
Board of Executive Directors.