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:
- "claim agent" (real lotteries do not use a "claim agent" / "fiduciary agent")
- "million united states 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)
- "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)
- "00,000.00" (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 fake lottery scam. Consider the following facts about real lotteries:
- They don't notify winners by email.
- You can't win without first buying a lottery ticket.
- They don't randomly select email addresses to award prizes to.
- They don't use free email accounts (Yahoo, Hotmail, etc) to communicate with you.
- They don't tell you to call a mobile phone number.
- They don't tell you to keep your winnings secret.
- They will never ask a winner to pay any fees to receive a prize!
- 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.
Fraud email example:
From: "THE FIFA WORLD CUP QATAR 2022 COMPUTER BALLOT LOTTERY" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 9 Jun 2022 01:56:21 +0200
Subject: YOU HAVE WON THE FIFA WORLD CUP QATAR 2022 COMPUTER BALLOT LOTTERY
YOU HAVE WON ON THE COMPUTER BALLOT LOTTERY
THE SUM OF US$10 MILLION US DOLLARS
FIFA WORLD CUP QATAR 2022 CUP BID LOTTERY AWARD
PRIZE AWARD NOTIFICATION
Today we wish to congratulate and inform you on the selection of cash prize of U$D10, 000,000.00 Million United States Dollars Only, your e-mail id was selected through the computer ballot system as a winner of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 CUP BID Lottery Award.
You have therefore been approved to claim a total sum of U$D10, 000,000.00 Million United States Dollars Only.
Contact your claim agent for the processing of your payment including your personal information for a smooth payment to you.
For verification purpose youre claim details are below:
Millionaire Raffle winning Numbers: Qatar2022/FIFA World Cup
Winning numbers for Lotto: Am22mus/Ah566agl/2022
Ref No.06 08 010 19 30 42
Batch number: 2022/06/DC36.
Security code: 676
Congratulations once again.
Please Contact your Agent: Mr. Lwazi Mazibuko South Africa, Football Fifa Agent for immediate release of your winning fund (Amount Won: U$D10, 000,000.00 Million United States Dollars Only.)
Tel: +27 86 536 8383
Fax: +27 86 536 8383
Mon - Fri: 9am to 5:30pm
Tue, Wed, Fri, Sat 9am to 11pm
Sun 9am to 3pm
All other days 9am to 5:30pm
All Lottery Game prizes must be claimed no later than the 365 days after the closing date of the particular Game. Any such prize not claimed within this period will be forfeited if you were one of the lucky winners.
Chair of the Communications Commission Member of the following Commissions: FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.