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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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:
- "required fee " (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "courier company" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Antony J. Blinken" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 2021 11:42:58 +0100
Subject: Notification of payment by ATM Master Credit Card
Attention: ATM Card Beneficiary,
I have registered your ATM CARD of US$5.500.000.00 Five Million Five
Hundred Thousand United States Dollar with Easy Global Courier Company
with registration code (Shipment Code WB33XXD) please Contact them
with your delivery information such as,
Your Telephone Number:.........
I have paid for the Insurance & Delivery fee. The only fee you have to
pay to the Easy Global Courier Company is their Security fee $150,
Note the required fee $150 should send Via Bitcoin Wallet or Apple
Gift Card so please contact the Courier Manager and make the payment
Purchase Bitcoin or Apple Gift Card of $150 when you contact the courier office.
Bitcoin Wallet Address: 13rqx4Zt7SiFfWrRPaDGpfwGqHqDCuKN67
Easy Global Company Office:
Name: Mr. Fred White
Phone: +1 (321) 724-9921
Mr. Fred White.