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:
- 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:
- "million united state 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)
- "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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: Mr Edet Okon <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 6 Sep 2021 07:45:25 +0100
Subject: YOU HAVE SUFFERED SO MUCH IN REGARDS TO YOUR PAYMENT HERE.
How are you today? I hope you have receive your funds? Very sorry i
saw your funds file what of ($US 22, 500,000.00) on Contract
No:FGCR/FED/PED/SAP/X91-94 Million United State Dollars marked with
red here, then i decided to write you. But if only you will obey and
follow my instructions, You will surely receive it soon.
Why are you driving forward on a reverse gear.
You cannot make a headway because you are putting the cart before the horse.
Even the holy book the bible said what can the righteous do if the
foundation is bad.
You can not receive your fund because the proper something has not
been done and that your fund has not been properly approved from the
authorized approving quarters.
My name is Mr Edet Okon,the Director of Operations,Federal Ministry of
finance Abuja Nigeria.
Please call me let me tell you a simple thing to do and you will see
your fund in your bank account in 7 working days.
I am not joking,I am serious.You have suffered enough.
Reach me through the email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr Edet Okon
Director of Operation
Ministry Of Finance