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:
- 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:
- "swift card payment center" (this phrase is often used in the ATM card payment scam)
- "foreign payment department" (Banks mentioned in 419 scams are always fake (real banks don't communicate using mobile phones or free webmail addresses))
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Contact of Obisheh John <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 16 Nov 2021 14:10:32 +0100
Subject: For your information
ATTENTION : ACCOUNT OWNER,
MY NAME IS , Mr. JOHN OBISEH , FROM FOREIGN TRANSFER OFFICE, I AM
HEREBY TO INFORM YOU THAT UBA BANK BENIN REPUBLIC HAVE BEEN MANDATED
TO ISSUE OUT YOUR PAYMENT OF 10,5MILLION USD THROUGH ATM VISA CARD.
YOU ARE ADVISED TO STOP FURTHER COMMUNICATION WITH ANY OTHER PERSON(S)
OR OFFICE(S) TO AVOID MADEA MISTAKE IN RECEIVING YOUR ATM VISA CARD.
USA BANK PLC. MANAGER HAVE CONFIRMED AUTOMATION OF YOUR SWIFT PAYMENT
THROUGH AN ELECTRONIC ATM CARD PAYMENT. THE BANK HAVE ARRANGED YOUR
PAYMENT THROUGH SWIFT CARD PAYMENT CENTER ASIA PACIFIC THIS CARD
CENTER WILL SEND YOU AN ATM VISA CARD WHICH YOU WILL USE TO WITHDRAW
YOUR MONEY IN ANY ATM MACHINE IN ANY PART OF THE WORLD . THIS IS A
SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT IN COLLABORATION WITH MASTER CARD COMPANY USA.
SEND THEM THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION OF YOURS FOR THE CONCLUSION OF THE
DELIVERY OF YOUR ATM CARD:
(1). YOUR FULL NAME,
(2). YOUR COUNTRY,
(3). YOUR DIRECT TELEPHONE NUMBERS,
(4). MOBILE PHONE NUMBER,
(5). YOUR CORRECT HOME ADDRESS,
(6). YOUR CURRENT OCCUPATION,
(7). YOUR AGE,
(8). YOUR NEXT OF KIN NAME AND EMAIL,
FOREIGN PAYMENT DEPARTMENT
UBA BANK BENIN REPUBLIC