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: MR PAUL MORRISON <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 18 Jan 2022 23:27:36 +0100
Subject: Greeting from UPS,
Greeting from UPS,
This is Mr Paul Morrison The CEO of United Parcel Service (UPS) Los
Angeles. Office Address: 950 Blaine St, Los Angeles, CA 90015, United
States. I received a report from ECOWAS that you have an abandoned
fund worth 14Million USD in West Africa. I have instructed ECOWAS and
the concerned authorities to bring the ATM CARD to our Head office in
Los Angeles. the fund will arrive in my office today. I want you to
kindly Reconfirm Your house address for the delivery of your abandoned
Current Home Address...........
Direct Cell Phone............
Text via number for delivery of your fund (262) 324-4808