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.
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- 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.
Fraud email example:
From: Dr Ali <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 20 Nov 2021 18:44:38 +0100
Please forgive me for contacting you without knowing your mind set, I
am Mr Ali, the branch manager of one of this bank here in lome Tog,
and we had a foreign client late Mrs. Patricia, who died In the year
2019, our late client died as a result of Corona virus (COVID-19).
our late client has an account with our bank totaling $ 2.300.000.00,
which she inherited from her late husband who was an industrialist
before he died, since that year after her death our bank has not had
anyone that comes for the claim of this fund as either her relation or
even as a friend.
A situation I have monitored closely with my position here as the
branch manager of this bank and l have finally removed her file to my
Now this is what I actually want you to do.
I have reasoned very professionally and l know that it will be proper
to present you as her next of kin so as to claim out this fund from
our bank, before it is transferred to the bank treasury where other
people may as well claim it without going to this length.
I wait for your response.
Tel:+228 99 20 61 82.