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:
- "hundred thousand united state 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)
- "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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs. Kristalina Georgieva" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 18 Jan 2022 20:05:22 +0100
Subject: Managing Director (MD) I.M.F Head Office
This is to inform you of a very important information which will be of a
great help to redeem you from all the difficulties you have been
experiencing in getting your long overdue payment, due to excessive demand
for money, from you by both corrupt Bank officials and Courier Companies
after which your fund remains unpaid to you.
I am Mrs. Kristalina Georgieva, Managing Director (MD) of the International
Monetary Fund (IMF).
It may interest you to know that reports have reached our office by so many
correspondences on the uneasy way which people like you are treated by
Various Banks and Courier Companies Diplomat(s) across Europe to Africa and
Asia London UK, and we have decided to put a stop to that and that is why I
was appointed to handle your transaction here in Washington, DC 20431, USA.
All Governmental and Non-Governmental prostates, NGO's, Finance Companies,
Banks, Security Companies and Diplomat(s) which have been in contact with
you of late have been instructed to back off from your transaction, and you
have been advised NOT to respond to them anymore since the I.M.F Head
Office is now directly in charge of your payment $4,800,000.00 USD (Four
million eight hundred thousand United State Dollars)
You are hereby advised NOT to remit further payment to any institutions
with respect to your transaction as your fund will be transferred to you
directly from our source. I hope this is clear. Any action contrary to this
instruction is at your own risk.
kindly send the following details for the release of your fund to you okay.
1.YOUR FULL NAME
2.YOUR HOME PHONE NUMBER
3.YOUR OFFICE NUMBER
4.ADDRESS WHERE YOU WANT THEM TO SEND YOUR ATM CARD
5.(P.O BOX NUMBER/ADDRESS)
7.YOUR CURRENT OCCUPATION
Mrs. Kristalina Georgieva
Managing Director (MD)
I.M.F Head Office