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:
- "high court" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "executive governor" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- "central bank of nigeria" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- "abuja" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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: "Mr. Godwin Emefiele" <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2023 15:13:46 -0800
Subject: INSTRUCTIONS TO RELEASE YOUR UNPAID FUND ( 1998)
CENTRAL BANK REMITTANCE UNIT,
CENTRAL BUSINESS DISTRICT,
CADASTRAL ZONE, ABUJA,
FEDERAL CAPITAL TERRITORY,
CONTRACT #: MAV/NNPC/FGN/MIN/013,
Swift Code: 1960BPH KPL PK,
PHONE : +234-9061612232
Our Ref: CBN/IRD/CBX/021/11
My name is Mr. Godwin Emefiele, the Executive Governor Of The Central
Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Executive Chairman of "E.C.D.R".I
discovered that your
name and email address (in the Central Computer among the list of
unpaid contractors, inheritance next of kin and lotto beneficiaries
that was originated
from Africa (Nigerian Government) Europe, Asia Plus Middle
east,Americans) among the list of individuals and companies that your
unpaid fund has been located to a suspense account.
Your name appeared among the beneficiaries who will receive a
part-payment of $10.7 million and has been approved already for Payment.
yesterday two foreigners (Mr. Tim Parker and Mr. Rowland Gulf) visited
my office in your stead to inform me that they are your
Representatives from the United States, whom you send to collect your
Funds for you.
We in this Bank do not understand why you sent these men to come and
Collect your Funds on your behalf. If actually you want them to help
you Collect your Inheritance Bill Sum,at least you should have
informed me as the new Executive Governor of this Bank. They actually
tendered some Vital Documents which Proved that you actually sent them
for the Collection of this Funds. Honestly, it really baffles me that
you took such a decision without my consent.
Here are the Document which they tender to this Bank today:
1. LETTER OF ADMINISTRATION.
2. HIGH COURT INJUNCTION.
3. ORDER TO RELEASE.
Actually, these Documents which they tendered to this Noble Bank is a
clear Proof that you sent them to Collect this Funds for you. Finally,
I told them to come back tomorrow morning and they promised to come
back .As the Governor of this Noble Bank, I was supposed to Release
this Funds to them but I refused to do so because I wanted to hear
from you first.
Due to the Nature of my job, I will not want to make any mistake in
Releasing this Funds to anyone except you whom is the Recognized
Bonafide Beneficiary to these Funds. Kindly clarify us on this issue
before we make this Payment to these foreigners who came on your
behalf. In receipt of this confidential Letter, you are required to
email this Bank immediately you receive this Confidential Letter.
or you can contact me with my direct telephone below.
MR. GODWIN EMEFIELE.