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:
- "million us dollars" (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: David Johnson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 14 Jan 2022 01:23:09 -0500
Subject: ATTENTION IS NEEDED
ATTENTION IS NEEDED
This is to Inform you that an ATM Card Number: 4283 0830 7403 4242
worth $5.2Million US Dollars has
been accredited by the Federal Government of Benin Republic as Fund
Compensation currently approved
in your favour. The package has been released today for delivery. You
are receiving this email message in
order to fully compensate victims that have had problems receiving
their funds or lost funds in the process.
We the United Bank for Africa registered under Benin Republic
government is charged to deliver your ATM
visa Card package to you. Please provide the below information as listed.
Full Names: /
Home Address: /
Mobile Telephone Number: /
Contact the secretary
Dept: Office of the secretary / Delivery department
Name:MR John Frank.
Kindly Note that the delivery of your ATM visa Card is still on hold
pending when we receive the above
information from you process the package. further details will be sent
to you after this time out.
If you have any question call me.+22953958811.
MR David Johnson.