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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: Mr Donald Benson <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 22 Jan 2022 13:17:56 -0800
Subject: Attn Beneficiary:
I am D.H,L courier Delivery Company agent Mr Donald Benson, the management
of this company, wishes to inform you that, we received a parcel,containing
an Fund valued $7.2 Million US Dollars with some vital documents attached
on it, for safety delivery to your residential address in your country.
This parcel was brought to us this morning by the Fund payment office
United States Of America, with the below informationâs, please reconfirm
the below information, to avoid delivery of your Fund to wrong hand.
Parcel owner address......
We will register your Fund and send you the tracking numbers before we
proceed for safety delivery of your package as soon as you reconfirm the
required information for safety delivery.
D.H.L is one of the world's great success stories, the start-up that
revolutionized the delivery of Fund and information. In the past 33
years, we've grown up and grown into a diverse family of companies as D.H.L
that's bigger, stronger, better than ever.
Waiting to read your e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Mr. Donald Benson.
Dispatch Manager D.H.L Courier
for the branch manager
D.H.L Express Service