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:
- 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:
- "huge sum of money" (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)
- "transferred into your bank account" (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 next of kin scam.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Ignazio Visco. Governor of Banca D' Italia" <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 3 Jan 2022 07:36:40 +0100
From: Mr. Ignazio Visco (Governor)
Banca D' Italia,
Via Cordusio 5-20123 Milano-Italy
Happy New Year 2022, this letter is written to you in a good faith. I
am Mr. Ignazio Visco, Governor with Banca D' Italia; I came across a
very huge sum of money belonging to a deceased person (Christian
Eich). He is foreigner, unfortunately He is now late as he was amongst
those that was killed in the recent plane crash during his visit to
London as you can confirm through this website
This man was our client and has a (Fixed) Deposit WORTH the sum of
â¬1,200,000.00 (One million two hundred thousand Euros) plus the
interest on it, making total of â¬3,600,000.00 (Three million Six
hundred thousand Euros) and the fund is lying unclaimed in our
custody, there is no next of kin mentioned in his file and there is no
how we can reach any of his other relatives. All efforts made by us to
establish contacts with any other of his relation have proved abortive
and unsuccessful. His (Fixed) Deposit will expire in the next few
months from the date of this letter to you.
I am contacting you. In view of the fact that the deceased customer is
a foreigner, it is officially important for the involvement of a
foreigner who will stand as a the owner of this unclaimed fund, I will
use my exalted position in this Bank to arrange all necessary
arrangement legally and without any risk to present you as the next of
kin and the fund will be Safely transferred into your bank account in
your country for us to share.
I will give you more information as soon as you indicate your
willingness to assist me in this viable transaction. The whole
procedures will last only fourteen working days to get the fund
retrieved successfully without any problem in future.
I NOW LOOK FORWARD TO THE PLEASURE OF YOUR KIND FAVORABLE RESPONSE
FAIRLY SOON, IN THE MEANTIME WITH KINDEST REGARDS & BEST WISHES, TAKE
CARE MY DEAR.
I REMAIN YOURS,
TRULY & SINCERELY,
Mr. Ignazio Visco.