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:
- 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:
- "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.
- 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: UNITED NATION <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 31 Dec 2021 10:38:58 +0100
Subject: COMPENSATION PAYMENT FOR 2021 FISCAL YEAR:
UNITED NATIONS FUNDS
NEW YORK-UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.
Dear Sir/Ma Good day,
COMPENSATION PAYMENT FOR 2021 FISCAL YEAR:
Sorry for making this contact through e-mail since we could not reach
your phone number.
My name is Mr Antonio Guterres,Secretary to United Nations.
A meeting was held on your behalf by just concluded 73rd United
Nation's general assembly within the UN/IMF countries concerning the
unclaimed funds denied to many people all over the world. Your funds
will be release to you by the paying bank for immediate payment .it
was discovered during this meeting that no funds has been paid to you
all this years of pursuit.The funds is now ready to be release to you
since you have been approved to receive/claim this compensation
payment of $15Million ($15 000,000.00 USD).
We have instructions to release your payment to you.\Kindly Forward Your
Next of Kin
for the release of your payment. The UN is sorry for the delay of funds release.
kindly send an email to this email(email@example.com)
get an immediate response.
MR ANTONIO GUTERRES,
SEC.GENERAL UNITED NATIONS