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:
- "courier company" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "MR.John Ken Esq" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 26 Aug 2021 13:37:27 +0100
This is to inform you that your long awaiting fund worth $2,5million has
been approved to be delivered to you in Good faith.
We are very sorry for our late response, we have been working very hard to
come up with proper modalities of making the delivery to you through DHL
and we have come to a final conclusion from our last meeting that you are
going to receive your FUND through ATM CARD.
Note: the only money you will send to them is $155 been their delivery fee
base on our agreement with them, please don't be deceived by anybody to
pay more than $155, and let me know once you receive your ATM Card, I will
advise you to call Dr Nelson Udo and ask him where to send the money and
when you will receive your ATM Card.
Please don't let them know the content of the package to avoid any problem
or miss packaging ok.
Reconfirm your current information to DHL Courier Company for immediate
procedure. Such as below
YOUR HOME ADDRESS_______
YOUR ID COPY____________
DIRECT PHONE NUMBER____
DHL Contact person.
Dr. NELSON uDO
Email:( email@example.com )
Thanks and God Bless You.
MR.John Ken Esq