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:
- ",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 Evans Omego <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 4 Jan 2022 09:56:26 -1100
Subject: YOUR ATM CARD PAYMENT HAS BEEN APPROVED
Be informed that after the investigations into some irregular payments by
the bank, the Republic of Togo in conjunction with the West Africa Fund
Monetary Board has formalized arrangements to commence the release of your
outstanding payment in the amount of $3,500,000.00 to you.
By this new payment arrangement, you are to enjoy less or no costs as your
payment has already been approved to be loaded into a Visa Debit (ATM) card
which will be delivered to you at your preferred destination in your
country. The ATM card will access your funds from any ATM in over 170
countries and can be used at POS globally.
So go ahead and furnish us with the following information below for
accurate delivery without mistakes:
1.) Name in full:
2.) Valid Delivery Address:
3.) Your Telephone Contact
The receipt of the above-listed requirements by our Debit Card Unit assures
safe delivery of your loaded ATM card to your destination within 48hrs.Take
note that as soon as the parcel is on transit your tracking number will be
forwarded to you so that it will enable you to track your package over
there and know when it will get to your address.
Let me repeat again reconfirm your delivery information as soon as you
receive this mail to avoid any further delay and take note that your pin
code of the card will be detailed and you are not to expose it to anybody,
please reply to me so that i will be rest assured that this message reach
Accept our congratulations.
Mr Evans Omego