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:
- "inheritance funds" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "trunk box" (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 us 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)
- ",000,000" (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)
- 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.
- +22552933377 (Cote d'Ivoire, probably a prepaid mobile phone)
- 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 Kozim Malonda <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 7 Apr 2023 21:36:13 +0100
The Office of the Payment Co-coordinator
UNITED NATIONS ORGANIZATION
Attention: Our Valued Customer
I wish to draw your attention to the existence of the sum of
US$1,000,000.00 (One Million US Dollars Only) being an Interest
accruing from the principal sum of your contract/inheritance fund in
West Africa, Asia, Europe and America. This decision was made early
this Year 2023 by International Monetary Fund (IMF) the BRITISH PRIME
MINISTER IN CONJUNCTION with U.S.A GOVERNMENT, WORLD BANK, UNITED
NATIONS ORGANIZATION with the UNION OF AFRICAN and the BOARD OF
GOVERNORS of the esteemed banks do hereby give this irrevocable
approval order IMF/EUR WHA/UFA/2023.
After due investigation, this email is among the 50,000 people to be
paid their accrued interest of CONTRACT/INHERITANCE ENTITLEMENT,
WINNING LOTTERY, SECURITY TRUNK BOX DEPOSIT in every part of your
Country, For the purpose of clarification, this interest accrued out
of the principal sum which was initially deposited with the Apex Bank,
but based on the mandate given to the bank to hold and take charge of
all interest accruing from foreign contract/inheritance funds, we have
the authority to inform you about the existence of this fund and also
to notify you that Mrs. Eugenia Been, sent an e-mail to us claims that
you are dead and she is authorized to claim the Fund on your behalf.
This interest is an accumulation your fund deposit over the years. We
are aware that the actual principal sum has not been paid out to you
due to unreliable attitude of the Officials handling the transfer at
the time, and we are equally aware that you have fulfilled all the
obligations required on your part.
Going by several reports from foreign beneficiaries over their unpaid
fund in Africa at large, even after they have met the requirements,
the fund still remain unpaid for one reason or another.
In resolve to this problem, the united Nation, International Monetary
Fund and European Union have resolved that all the beneficiaries in
Category A. should be paid their interest through the allocation
Provided by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) with our Institution
and you are among the beneficiaries who will benefit from this
To effectively qualify to receive the accrued interest fund, you are
hereby advised to get back to me as soon as possible to enable us
workout the modality for the transfer of this interest to you.
You are required to contact me for more clarification with the
1. Your Full Name:
2. Your Direct Telephone:
3. Your Residential Address:
4. Your Current Receiving Banking Details
5. A copy of your identification
6. Your occupation.
Mr. Kozim Malonda
Tel: +225 52933377