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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "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)
- "i got your email address from " (this SPAM email was probably sent to thousands of people)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Gen Muhammad Ahmadza <email@example.com>
Date: Sun, 10 Oct 2021 18:19:52 +0100
Subject: Re: Awaiting your response.
My name is Gen Wali Muhammad Ahmadza former Chief of General Staff of
the Afghan Armed Forces; I am in search of a reputable company or
honest individual that can assist me with this deal without exposing
me or runaway with the money upon receipt of the money in his custody.
I believe this world is a free place to do business with anyone with
my experience. I got your email address from a business guest book and
I have asked my personal assistant to contact you for two weeks now, I
decided to write to you myself to confirm if you actually received the
email and if you're willing to handle this transaction.
I have refunded back part of the funds but I have US$45,600,000.00
Million in a safe secured Security Company overseas. I canât travel or
do open business with people because of my status and the situation of
things in my country but I need a secret partner to help and receive
this funds for investment.
Please if youâre interested, get back to me.
I wait for your urgent response.
Gen Muhammad Ahmadza