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.
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- 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.
- +447045739063 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
- 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 Rodrigo De Rato <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 22 Sep 2021 22:22:47 +0100
Subject: OUTSTANDING PAYMENT NOTIFICATION
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND (IMF)
DEPT: WORLD DEBT RECONCILIATION AGENCIES.
ADVISE: YOUR OUTSTANDING PAYMENT NOTIFICATION
Wednesday, 22 September 2021
OUTSTANDING PAYMENT NOTIFICATION
Your Long overdue Payment.
I saw your email ( in the Central Computer among the list of unpaid
contractors, inheritance next of kin and lotto beneficiaries that was
originated from Africa, Europe, Asia Plus Middle east, Americans )
among the list of individuals and companies that your unpaid fund has
been located to the CITI BANK LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM.
Your email appeared among the beneficiaries, who will receive a
part-payment of your contractual sum and has been approved already for
months. You are requested to get back to me for more direction and
instruction on how to receive your fund.
However, we received an email from one Mr. Virgle Lee Samples who told
us that he is your next of kin and that you died in a car accident
last week. He has also submitted his account for us to transfer the
fund to him including his International passport, we want to hear from
you before we can make the transfer to confirm if you are dead or not
Please in confirmation that you are still alive, you are advised to
reconfirm the below listed information to enable us facilitate an
immediate payment for you.
1 Your full names
2 Your present contact address.
3 Your telephone & Fax numbers.
4 Your Occupations/age/sex.
5 Your Private Email Address.
Once again, I apologize to you on behalf Of IMF (International
Monetary Fund) for failure to pay your funds in time, which according
to records in the system had been long overdue.
+44 704 573 9063