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:
- "barr." (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- 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: International Monetary Fund <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 08 Sep 2022 07:47:17 -0700
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND (IMF)
Address: 1900 Pennsylvania Avenue NW,
Washington, DC 20431, United States
Direct Phone: (718) 218 3299
Our Ref: IMF/0015-OSD/021
ASSISTED REFUND PROGRAM:
This letter serves to officially inform you that we have been working
towards the eradication of scam in the world with the help of African
Union (AU), United Nations Security Council (UNSC), European Union
(EU), the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and Internet crime
complaint center (IC3), Financial Intelligence center and FBI. We were
able to track down up to 74 scam artists globally from (Canada, USA,
Malaysia, Poland, Mauritius, Benin, Nigeria and Indonesia) and they
are all in government custody facing criminal and fraud charges.
The United Nations board of trustees on humanitarian aids instructed
that part of the money recovered from the scammers should be shared
among 27 lucky people around the world for compensation and you are on
the list as your email address was found in one of the scam Artistsâ
computer hard-disk hence we are contacting you, maybe you have been
scammed or being tried to.
You can view this website for your perusal:
You are advised to contact our legal representative here in the United
States (Barr. Mark Filip) on below details to help and guide you in
applying for your International bank transfer of USD$2,500.000.00.
This fund is in the escrow account of the Federal Insurance Deposit
Corporation for security reasons.
Also forward your information as follows to Barr. Mark Filip.
1. Your name...
2. Your age...
3. Your full address...
4. Your telephone number...
5. Your Occupation.....
Name: Barr. Mark Filip
Mr. Bernard Lauwers
Finance Department Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF)