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:
- "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)
- ",500,000" (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)
- "await your urgent response" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "email@example.com" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- 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: Kenneth Bola <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 29 Mar 2023 23:03:20 +0100
Subject: RE: TRANSFER OF $10.5 MILLION,
RE: TRANSFER OF $10.5 MILLION,
I am pleased to inform you that we have received an irrevocable
payment application from World Bank Washington, D.C., United States .
Instructing us to transfer the
deposited fund involving you as the only Bona-fide Beneficiary.
Nevertheless, we have taken cognizance of the deposited sum of
$10,500,000.00 United State Dollars for
the remittance directly to your nominated bank account.
Consequently, we are presently harmonizing the deposited file in your
Favor following the payment application received on your behalf. You
Will be notified as soon as
we are through with the authentication exercise. As part of our
protocol, kindly notify us with your bank details for affirmation and
successive wire transfer witting
the time frame.
Please be informed that the remittance should be consummated as soon
as we are through with the authentication exercise , consequently, you
are advice to add here to
this directive so that we can meet up with the time frame in
accordance with the International Remittance Act.
Note, because of the ongoing maintenance, you are advice to furnish us
with your banking details through email.
This is for your kind information while we await your urgent response.
Mr. Kenneth Bolaa
Group Chief Financial Officer
Access Bank Plc Nigeria
Phone No: +234 9047706718