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)
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a "New Partner from Paraguay" scam.
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Yahoo, United Kingdom; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: JAMES YOUNG <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 15 Oct 2021 06:24:12 -0700
Please accept my apology for not contacting you earlier before now due to
my tight schedules. I am very happy to inform you about my success in
getting that money under the cooperation of a new partner from India
Presently I'm in India with the partner for some projects with the money.
The reason why I am compensating you is because I used your name to claim
the Fund as the next of kin, but please donât tell the Bank that you are
not the person that Claim the Fund or else I will go to jail if the Bank
finds out. The US$350,000.00 draft is from one of my trading
Meanwhile I didn't forget your past efforts and attempts to assist me in
the transaction that failed us somehow. Now contact my secretary, her name
is Mrs. Margaret Denko, and her email address and house is (
firstname.lastname@example.org ) Whittlesey StBishop's, London, UK Phone
number +447990040848 ask her to send you the total $350,000.00 Bank
Draft which I kept for your compensation for all your past efforts and
attempts to assist me in this matter. I appreciated your efforts at that
time very much .So feel free and get in touch with my secretary Mrs.
Margaret Denko, and instruct her where to send the amount to you.
Please do let me know immediately you receive it so that we can share the
joy after all the sufferings at that time. I'm very busy here because of
the investment projects, which the new partner and me are having at hand,
finally, Remember that I had forwarded instruction to My secretary on your
behalf to receive those money feel free to get in touch with Mrs. Margaret
Denko She will send the amount to you without any delay.
Barrister James Young
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