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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "to your nominated bank account" (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 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)
- "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)
- "dear beneficiary," (this SPAM email was probably sent to thousands of people)
- "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.
Fraud email example:
From: BANK DEPARTMENT OFFICE <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 27 Mar 2023 23:52:44 +0100
Subject: Instruction To Credit Your Account!
Central Bank of Nigeria
Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Way
Central Business District,
Federal Capital Territory,
Fund code: 001722147/CBN/7537/2023
Instruction To Credit Your Account! $35.000,000.00
(THIRTY FIVE Million United States Dollars only).
I have made it my first point of call since taking office to settle
all outstanding payments accrued to individuals/corporations with
respect to local and overseas contract payment, debt re-scheduling and
outstanding compensation payment. This is to make sure all outstanding
payments are settled before the end of the fiscal year 2023.
I have your file here in my office and it says that you are yet to
receive your fund valued at (THIRTY FIVE Million United States
This money will now be transferred to your nominated bank account or
your preferred payment option.
You are advised to kindly reply this email with the below details
enclosed to help us process your payment;
(1) Full Names:
(2) Residential Address:
(3) Current Phone Number:
(5) Country of Residence:
Thanks for your co-operation as I wait to hear from you.
Your prompt response to the above directive is highly imperative
I wait for your call +234-812-811-4415 +2348036271144
CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA(CBN)
Note: The information contained in this e-mail is private &
confidential and may also be legally privileged. If you are not the
intended recipient, please notify us, preferably by e-mail, and do not
read, copy or disclose the contents of this message to anyone.