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:
- "transfer of your funds" (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)
- ",500,000" (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: Mr Charles Governmental depertment officer <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 30 Dec 2021 10:24:40 +0100
Subject: your urgent reply is needed
Good Day Funds Owner,
This is to inform you that the United States Government has
instructed us to remit the sum of $10,500,000.00 United States Dollars
to your Bank account or we credit it into an ATM Visa Card and deliver
to your residential home address, the reason for this transaction with
this Bank of America and the Federal Government of United States is to
compensate you for the lost of your money from internet scammers
across the globe. This funds was approved by President Donald John
Trump, Ministry of Finance, Department of Justice of United States,
FBI and Homeland Security were all aware of this legal transaction
that is real and genuine.
Your are receiving this funds due to your name, cell number and email
address was among the scam victims that lost a lot of money to African
Fraudsters and you're hereby advised to contact us without any further
delay, you must stop all means of communications between you and
anybody on internet because you
will end up at nothing, hence there are two options to receive your funds.
(1) By Bank to Bank Wire Transfer
(2) By ATM Visa Card.
We are waiting for your immediate response with your information to
enable this Bank of America proceed immediately with the transfer of
your funds or to Credit the sum of $10,500,000.00 USD into an ATM Visa
Card as a property of Bank of America and deliver it to your home
address. Reconfirm your full information
below such as;
Valid cell number...........email address.........
Any Of Your Identification Card....
Do not send money upfront fee to anyone from African again for what so
ever reason. The Bank of America will immediately remit your account
once I reconfirm your banking details or if you choose an ATM Visa
Card then you will receive it within 24 hours only.