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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "top secret" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "barr." (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
- 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: "FROM THE OFFICE OF DR.JOHN BOLTON" <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 2 Jun 2022 03:43:42 -0700
How are you today
I am Barr. DR JOHN BOLTON ( Lawyer and Doctor in Law) based in Spain.
My Client is an English and a Businessman that operated in Madrid and
worldwide died from Corona-virus (COVID â19) after being infected on
the Diamond Princess Cruise Ship. My late client had no immediate
family and died intestate (without will). Being his only Attorney
before his demise, I have some privileged Information and facts about
my late client.
I must solicit your confidence in this transaction, this is by virtue
of its nature as being utterly confidential and top secret. Though I
know that a transaction of this magnitude will make any one
apprehensive and worried, but I am assuring you that all will be well
at the end of the day.
My purpose of contacting you is for you to help me to secure his funds
deposited with Spanish Bank before he died, to avoid it being
confiscated or declared as unclaimed by the Bank. The fund value is
â¬11,500, 000.00 (Eleven Million, Five Hundred Thousand Euros), this
money was deposited by my late client before his death and up till
today his relatives remained unknown.
All relevant documents and information as regards to the cash deposit
is in my possession as we speak therefore I guarantee the success of
this transaction in all legal definitions. As his attorney I have
contacted the bank for the claim of the fund and the Bank has issued
me a notice to contact the next of kin or the account will be declared
unserviceable and the fund will be retired by the state (Ayuntamiento
de Madrid). This type of incident is not new, there are many people
who try to evade taxes in their country of origin by depositing their
money in a foreign secret accounts but I never knew my late client had
one until his accidental death and the eventual disclosure from my
contact in the bank. Since this account is secret and there is no one
left to claim the fund I am contacting you.
I am actually asking for your consent to present you to the Bank as
the Next of Kin/beneficiary of my late clientâs fund, so that the fund
will be released to you as his next of kin. All the legal documents to
back up your claim as my clientâs next of Kin are with me. All I
require is your honest cooperation and absolute confidentiality in
order to guarantee success.
I wish to point out that I want 20% of this money to be shared among
the Charity Organizations, while the remaining is shared equally
between us. This transaction is entirely risk free. I will use my
position as the clientâs personal attorney to guarantee the successful
execution of this transaction. If you are interested, please contact
me Tel: +34 602 503 384, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org upon
your response, I shall then provide you with more details and relevant
documents that will help you understand more on this transaction.
The intended transaction will be processed under legitimacy, which
will protect me and you from any violation of law. If you wish to
achieve the goal with me, please kindly get back to me with your
interest for further explanations and better understanding. Also be
kind to let me know if you are not interested so that I can further my
C/ Juan FlÃ³rez, 8 â 6Âª planta. 15004 â A CoruÃ±a (EspaÃ±a)
Tel: +34 602 503 384
OUR REF: Y&NGO/KN3/EUR4522
YOUR REF: EU/79834/ESP
Dr / Barrister. DR. JOHM BOLTON.
Attorney at Law.