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:
- ",000,000" (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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "FWS BHC" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 11 Oct 2021 08:04:53 -0400
Subject: Re: This is urgent please!
This is urgent please. I got your contact details from a online
website business directory. I am Qadeer and a former governor of
Afghan. I need your help to invest my funds into rice factory
which i already started in California with my partners but due to
high tax we stop the project and i need to relocate and re-
invest. I need a partner who can help and invest my funds into
any good investment plan. Note before you start the investment
you will be having 30% and invest 70% for me which you are to
invest into the rice factory or any good investment plan you
have. I am having $35,000,000.00 Million after my lost in the
I need to hear back from you please.
Tel:+1 404 596 653