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:
- "consignment " (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.
Fraud email example:
From: Kristalina Georgieva <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 22 Jan 2022 18:51:14 +0100
Subject: YOUR URGENT ATTENTION IS NEEDED
Greetings to you
This is Kristalina Georgieva, the Director of
International Monetary Fund. Iâm contacting you regarding your
Consignment box worth $10.5 MillionUnited States Dollars brought to
my desk to be signed and send back to the originated country as
fund. As a result of the information i got, i told them to wait until
i hear from you today so i will know the reason why you rejected such
amount of money which is your Compensation Fund just because of the
documentaries needed. I need your urgent response as soon as you
receive my text and explain to me the reason why you have abandon your
box, but if you don't
need it then I can change your name to another person here in United
State, so that this Government will not claim this money. Get back to
me with your below information:
3.Cell Phone No:
warning: Please you must stop further communication with anybody,
office, individual or organization relating to
this transaction to avoid distractions in the remittance of your fund.
We are expecting a swift response to this letter and upon the receipt
of this email. Thank you.