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:
- "ecowas " (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Stephanie McGill <email@example.com>
Date: Sun, 16 Jan 2022 08:50:36 -0600
Subject: RE-APPROVED PAYMENT CLAIMS
UNITED NATIONS COMPENSATION UNIT, IN AFFILIATION WITH WORLD BANK GROUP; Ref=
: UNFF/214/022 Date: 1/16/2022 WORLD BANK AUDITORS; SITTING PRUDENTLY IN TH=
E UK PRIME FINANCIAL INSTITUTION 8, Bank Buildings, Bridgend Industrial Est=
ate, Mid Glam organ CF31 3SB, United Kingdom. http://www.un.org/press/en At=
tn: Beneficiary, RE-APPROVED PAYMENT CLAIMS We have been having several ser=
ies of meetings since last year 2021 and this lasted for the past 7 months =
which we have aligned with our Secretary General of the UNITED NATIONS (Mr.=
Antonio Gueterres) whom has approved this Email to be sent. This email is =
to all the beneficiaries that have been scammed in any part of the world, t=
he UNITED NATIONS have agreed to permit all paper works to issue out the du=
e payment to all beneficiaries that have been contacted. This includes ever=
y Stimulus/Benefit Payments, Lottery/Contract Fund, Compensation & Inherita=
nce Payment From 2019 - 2021 Records before this year's 2022 programme comm=
ences on beneficiaries that has not received their contract fund and benefa=
ctors that had unfinished international transactions that failed due to gov=
ernmental problems, Virus Outbreak, illegal charges, etc. Furthermore, we f=
ound your Email-Address on our list and this is why we are contacting you, =
this has been agreed upon by all sectors and countries nationwide and has b=
een approved by the United Nations and ECOWAS WEST AFRICA in this New Year =
2022. Apparently, we are having counterclaims on this from different benefi=
ciaries who have come claiming funds on behalf of other people. So If you a=
re still alive and available, get back to me urgently with the below detail=
s: Full Name: Country: Telephone No: Home address: With any form of Identif=
ication(ID/Driver=92s License/Passport): We will wait to hear from you urge=
ntly for urgent procedures respectively. Best Regards, Stephanie McGill UNI=
TED NATIONS Headquarters. www.un.org