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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "cost of transfer" (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "central bank of nigeria" (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.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: BNP PARIBAS BANK <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 25 Feb 2022 05:03:08 -0800
Subject: GOOD NEWS
** Ordering Customerâ:
CENTRAL BANK - NG**
004 SWIFT TRN 92BK
BANK PRIOTY (300 CRF)
FUND TRANSFER CONFIRMATION O.K FURTHER CREDIT ACCEPTED.
We have received your payment approval from our ordering Customer
Service in the Central Bank of Nigeria for the further credit to your
bank account from the deck of the Governor Cbn. With all due respect,
our bank has obliged to credit your account with instruction. Quoting
reference to BNP transfer regulation and in line with British
Financial and Allied Conduct, your account will be effected as soon as
you reconcile our 1% Cost of Transfer or you may advise us to deduct
the total value and transfer the balance to your account.
Should you be willing to accept deduction, our bank is therefore
urging you to contact the authorized CBN Paying Officer Danny Wilson
of the International Remittance Dept. on E-mail:
email@example.com Please ask him to issue you the Original
Hard Copy of the Authority to Deduct Bill of Exchange to enable us
deduct the 1% cost of transfer. Be advised also that we only
acknowledge the receipt of the ORIGINAL HARD COPY OF THE BILL OF
EXCHANGE FORM, which must be duly filed and signed by the beneficiary
before we can effect deduction.
Please be warned, as our bank does not trust any Nigerian Official
except Danny Wilson whom we can give attention to in any of this
Prior to our banking regulation, final credit shall be made to your
account upon your instruction.