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:
- 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:
- "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. )
- "huge amount of money" (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)
- "international remittance department" (Banks mentioned in 419 scams are always fake (real banks don't communicate using mobile phones or free webmail addresses))
- "courier company" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- 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.
- email@example.com (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: Federal Bureau <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 13 Mar 2023 08:07:57 +0100
Subject: (FBI) PAYMENT MEMO TO PAYMENT BENEFICIARIES.
FBI HEADQUARTERS IN WASHINGTON, D.C.
FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION
J. EDGAR HOOVER BUILDING
935 PENNSYLVANIA AVENUE, NW
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20535-0001
DATE: 03/13/2023, Website: washingtondc.fbi.gov.
ATTN: ATM CARD PAYMENT BENEFICIARY,
(FBI) PAYMENT MEMO TO PAYMENT BENEFICIARIES.
GOOD NEWS FOR YOU FROM THE FBI UNITED STATES. WE HAD A MEETING WITH
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND AND FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OF NIGERIA/ BENIN
OVER YOUR LONG OVERDUE CONTRACT PAYMENT AND WE AGREED WITH THEM THAT
YOUR FUND SHOULD NOT COST YOU ANYTHING BECAUSE IS YOUR MONEY, WHICH WE
FINALLY REACHED AN AGREEMENT YESTERDAY THAT ALL THE PAYMENT WILL BE
PAID VIA ATM SMART CARD WHICH IS THE SIMPLEST WAY TO TRANSFER HUGE
AMOUNT OF MONEY TO AVOID COST OF TRANSFER AND OTHER STATUTORY
DOCUMENTS, WHICH WE STRETCHED TO HAVE A STRONG AGREEMENT OVER THE
PAYMENT THAT WILL COST YOU ONLY $195USD FOR DELIVERY OF YOUR ATM SMART
CARD VIA UPS OR FEDEX DELIVERY COMPANY DEPENDING ON YOUR CHOICE.
HOWEVER, YOU HAVE ONLY TWO WORKING DAYS TO SEND THIS REQUIRED DELIVERY
FEE OF $195USD TO FEDEX OR UPS COURIER COMPANY FOR DELIVERING OF YOUR
CARD BECAUSE YOUR CARD WILL BE DISPATCH TO THEM IMMEDIATELY. AND IF WE
DONâT HEAR FROM YOU WITH THE PAYMENT INFORMATION; THE FEDERAL BUREAU
OF INVESTIGATION WILL NOT HESITATE BY GIVEN INSTRUCTION TO FEDERAL
GOVERNMENT OF NIGERIA AND THE INTERNATIONAL REMITTANCE DEPARTMENT TO
CANCEL YOUR PAYMENT THAT HAS BEEN ALREADY APPROVED AND PROGRAMMED IN
AN ATM SMART CARD.
I WANT YOU TO READ BELOW CAREFULLY, THE NOTICE BELOW STAND AS CAUTION
BEFORE IT IS LATE. FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION, YOU MUST BE CONSCIOUS OF
THIS PROJECT, AS I WILL SOON CONCLUDE THIS TRANSACTION WITH YOU, LET
THIS STAND AS A WARNING BEFORE YOU IN CASE YOU RECEIVED ANY E-MAILS
OR CALLS REGARDING TO THIS FROM ANY INDIVIDUAL, OFFICE, ORGANIZATION
AND BANKS CLAIMING TO BE ME.
BE INFORMED THAT YOU MAY ALSO RECEIVE SEVERAL E-MAILS AND TELEPHONE
CALLS FROM ANY ORGANIZATION, SUCH MUST BE FORWARDED TO US IMMEDIATELY
FOR VERIFICATION.IT MIGHT COME TO YOU WITH DIFFERENT PROPOSALS WITH
DIFFERENT NAMES INCLUDING MY NAME ASKING YOU TO COME AND PUT CLAIM ON
YOUR ESTATE OR EVEN FUNDS BELONGING TO YOU OR TO SOMEBODY YOU DO NOT
KNOW, I URGE YOU TO IGNORE SUCH E-MAILS OR CALLS, WHILE YOU FORWARD IT
TO US. I WANT YOU TO UNDERSTAND THAT THE MOST IMPORTANT THING FOR ME
IS YOUR UNDERSTANDING AND CO-OPERATION. WHILE RESPONDING TO THE ATM
CARD PAYMENT OFFICER YOU MUST CONFIRM THIS CODE (10/10/2022) FOR
HOWEVER, BE INFORMED THAT THE PART PAYMENT, WHICH IS 3,000.000.00
MILLION U.S. DOLLARS HAS BEEN LOADED IN YOUR ATM SMART CARD AND YOUR
FUND WHICH IS IN TUNE OF 10,500.000.00 MILLION U.S. DOLLARS WILL COME
IN BATCHES OF 3,000.000.00 MILLION U.S. DOLLARS AND THIS IS THE FIRST
BATCH OF YOUR PART PAYMENT.YOUR PAYMENT WOULD BE SENT TO YOU VIA UPS
OR FEDEX, BECAUSE WE HAVE SIGNED A CONTRACT WITH THEM WHICH SHOULD
EXPIRED BY 03/31/2023. BELOW ARE FEW LIST OF TRACKING NUMBERS YOU CAN
TRACK FROM UPS WEBSITE(WWW.UPS.COM) TO CONFIRM PEOPLE LIKE YOU WHO
HAVE RECEIVED THEIR PAYMENT SUCCESSFULLY.
JOHNNY ALMANTE ==============1Z2X59394198080570
GARY METZGER ==============1Z2X59394195952759
GLEN PAPANIKAS ==============1Z2X59394198690947
CAROL R BUCZYNSKI ==============1Z2X59394197862530
KARIMA EMELIA TAYLOR ==============1Z2X59394198591527
LISA LAIRD ==============1Z2X59394196641913
POLLY SHAYKIN ==============1Z2X59394198817702
MOREOVER, THIS IS ANOTHER PEOPLE THAT RECEIVED THEIR PAYMENT THROUGH
FEDEX WEBSITE (WWW.FEDEX.COM).
RICHARD AUTRY ============== 869713119185
GARY METZGER ============== 871363130860
MARK STUBBS ==============871363116168
HOWEVER,BE ADVISED BASED ON OUR RECOMMENDATION/INSTRUCTIONS THAT YOUR
COMPLETE CONTRACT/INHERITANCE OVER-DUE FUNDS WILL BE RELEASED
IMMEDIATELY UPON YOUR CONTACT TO THE NEWLY APPOINTED PAYMENT OFFICER
THAT WILL CARRY OUT THE DISPATCH OF YOUR ATM SMART CARD TO UPS COURIER
COMPANY WITH THE PAYMENT FOR DELIVERY OF YOUR PACKAGED. YOU ARE
THEREFORE ADVISED TO CONTACT REV.JAMES LONG IMMEDIATELY AS STATED
BELOW AS THE APPOINTED DIRECTOR OF ATM SMART CARD/FOREIGN OPERATION
DEPT AND ASK HIM ON HOW AND WHERE TO SEND THE PAYMENT OF $195.00 ONLY
TO FEDEX OF UPS COURIER COMPANY.
CONTACT PERSON: REV.JAMES LONG
PRIVATE EMAIL ADDRESS: (email@example.com)
PRIVATE DIRECT TELL +229-9729-0681
YOU'RE ADVISED TO CONTACT HIM IMMEDIATELY SO AS TO ENABLE HIM
FACILITATE A SPEEDY PROCESSING AND RELEASE OF YOUR DELIVERY SINCE IS
THE ONLY $195.00 USD THAT IS KEEPING YOUR ATM SMART CARD. CONTACT HIM
WITH THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION AS BELOW:
5.A COPY OF YOUR IDENTITY:....
NOTE: YOU'RE ADVISED TO FURNISH YOUR INFORMATION TO INTERNATIONAL
REMITTANCE DEPARTMENT DIRECTOR REV JAMES LONG WITH YOUR CORRECT AND
VALID DETAILS TO ENABLE HIM EXPEDITE SPEEDY ACTION ON THE PROCESSING
OF YOUR PAYMENT. WE EXPECT YOUR SWIFT RESPONSE TO THIS EMAIL TO ENABLE
US MONITOR THIS PAYMENT AND THE DELIVERY OF YOUR ATM SMART CARD
EFFECTIVELY THEREBY MAKING CONTACT WITH THE INTERNATIONAL REMITTANCE
DEPARTMENT AS DIRECTED TO AVOID FURTHER DELAY.
YOUâRE ALSO EXPECTED TO FOLLOW HIS ADVICE AND DIRECTIVES TO AVOID
DELAY IN RELEASING YOUR PAYMENT BECAUSE YOUR PAYMENT FILE HAS ALREADY
BEEN MOVED TO IMF OFFICE FOR PROCESSING AND VERIFICATION.
YOURS IN SERVICE,
DIRECTOR CHRISTOPHER A. WRAY,
FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20535
Note: Disregard any email you get from any impostors or offices
claiming to be in possession of your ATM card, you are hereby advice
only to be in contact with Rev.Dr.James Long who is the rightful
person to deal with in regards to your payment and forward any emails
you get from impostors to this office so we could act upon it
immediately. Help stop cyber crime.