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:
- "consignment " (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)
- "we advice you" (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Intl Debt Clearance Unit <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 21 Aug 2021 13:24:29 -0700
Subject: RE: CONTACT IMMEDIATELY FOR DELIVERY OF YOUR FUND
I am Mr. Robert Dockett , A Payout Officer, International Debt
Clearance Unit (IDCU), in charge of processing and remitting payment
to all beneficiaries of the AU/EU and United States Compensation
scheme, This is to inform you that we have been working towards the
eradication of fraudsters and scam Artists globally with the help of
the Organization of African Union (AU), European Union (EU) and United
States of America (USA) with the collaboration of International
Monetary Fund (IMF) as it was promise by Ms. Kristalina Georgieva,
Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to restore
back power/funds to the world global economic challenge for humanity.
We have been able to track down some scam artist in various parts of
the world and they are all in the custody of Financial Crime
Commission (FCC) now for prosecution.
During the course of investigation, We were able to recovered some
funds from these scam artists and IMF organization have ordered the
funds recovered to be shared among the victims listed around the World
as a compensation. This notice is been directed to you because your
email address was found in our hard-disk during our investigation,
Upon this development,You have being compensated with sum of USD
$1,500.000.00 US Dollars ($1.5M USD).
Since your email address is among the lucky beneficiaries who will
receive the first batch of compensation funds, we have arranged your
payment to be deliver to you by cash in a consignment box through a
secured delivery handler to you in your country.
In order to proceed with this transaction, We will wait for your
urgent respond to this email informing your readiness to receive your
We advice you to stop all the communications with everyone regarding
any transaction for efficient and prompt service towards receiving
Thanks for your understanding as you follow instructions while I wait
to hear from you soon.
International Debt Clearance Unit (IDCU)