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:
- "million united states 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)
- "remain blessed" (scammers in West Africa like to use religious phrases)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Michael Wood" <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 16 Nov 2021 00:08:55 -0800
Subject: Welcome To US Bank,Branch Dallas TX(R).
Welcome To US Bank,Branch Dallas TXÂ®.
Address: 650 S Griffin St C Hall, Dallas, TX 75202, United States
IMMEDIATE RELEASE OF YOUR FUND $11,200,000.00 Million United
States Dollars Only
REF: FILE NO, UN-JKRM0X5
You are welcome to US BANKÂ® with world wide transaction at its best.
We are pleased to be at your service.US BANKÂ® is Regulated and
Stipulated by the Funds transfer
Service world-wide, The transfer institutions that REGULATES all Fund
transfer activities in the UNITED STATES.
Your bank details has been confirmed by this Bank, however we must
apologize for the little delay in responding which is as a result of
our normal investigations
before final approval is made. Having said that; We would like to
inform you that you will be receiving your payment transfer soon
after clearance process.
However, we have only two options for this outstanding payment and you
have been mandated to comply by informing us on which option will be
more appreciative by you,
hence our job is to ensure that we give any of our customer the best of service.
Kindly choose from the two options outlined below:
A. BANK TO BANK WIRE TRANSFER
B. ELECTRONIC FUNDS TRANSFER (EFT)
Inline with the 7 bank working days given to us to complete this
transfer, we advise you do not delay in responding back to our mails
so as to enable us manage the
time limited to us...Revert to this Bank Authority immediately after
reading via E-mail.
Thank you for using US BANKÂ®, Our Priority is your satisfaction and
your favorable and timely response will be very much appreciated, I
await your prompt response,
thanks and remain blessed.
Mr. Michael Wood
US Bank,Branch Dallas TXÂ®: