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:
- ",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)
- "fund beneficiary" (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)
- "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: United-nation-services-us <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 26 Jan 2011 23:18:59 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Your Recovered Entitlement.
United Nations House
Plot 617/618, Central Area District, Abuja
Garki Abuja, Nigeria.
In the course of a recently concluded 2010
investigations and subsequent arrests of suspected fraudsters and scammers in
Africa region, in collaboration of the present governments of Nigeria, Ghana,
Cote D'Ivoire, Burkina faso and South Africa, the UN security operatives have so
far arrested and prosecuted over 300 government and banking officials and arrest
is still going on.
So far, the UN security operatives has also recovered
about $5.1 Billion from both cash in accounts and properties and assets
confiscated. It is from the address books of the arrested officials that your
email address was recovered.
Right now, the United Nations (UN) and their
Africa Union (AU) counterpart is paying a $1,000,000.00 compensation to those
whose emails addresses and other personal data are recovered from these arrested
officials, and also paying full contract or inheritance and wining amounts to
those with provable information qualifying them as genuine contractors and
beneficiaries of funds in the affected African countries.
do you fall? Have you been getting emails for payments from these countries? OR
are you a legitimate contractor and fund beneficiary in any of the affected
Please, indicate clearly as you get back to me for
proper guidelines and details on how to receive this compensation OR your full
Mrs. Helen Agbaje.