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:
- "million british pounds" (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)
- "you are advise to" (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a fake lottery scam. Consider the following facts about real lotteries:
- They don't notify winners by email.
- You can't win without first buying a lottery ticket.
- They don't randomly select email addresses to award prizes to.
- They don't use free email accounts (Yahoo, Hotmail, etc) to communicate with you.
- They don't tell you to call a mobile phone number.
- They don't tell you to keep your winnings secret.
- They will never ask a winner to pay any fees to receive a prize!
- 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.
- +447010285766 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
- 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: "ROBERTSON BENEDICT" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 3 Aug 2011 21:52:42 +0530
Subject: BBC ONE CORPORATION: THE NATIONAL LOTTERY DRAWS
THE NATIONAL LOTTERY DRAWS BBC ONE
P.O. Box 200, Harrogate England, United Kingdom.
BBC One Lottery Representative
Presented by OJ Borg
Batch No: 515944052/166
Winning No: 16
For Winner no.3
Recent Draw no 1116
1592. (05) (07) (24) (28) (32)thbal(06)
Dear NO3. Lucky Winner,
This is to inform you that you have won the sum of Five Hundred Thousand British Pounds (£500.000.00)
from our 2011 Charity Bonanza. The draw NO.1116 brought out your Email Address from our Microsoft Data
Base of Internet Users and thus qualifies you a benefited winner of the stated winning amount, in the
ongoing Forty-Four Billion, Four Hundred Million British Pounds (£44.4billion) lotto bonanza for London's
Heritage, Held Recently. The BBC One National Lottery Fund gives grants and incentives to the
less-privileged to sustain and transform their lives all over the globe.
To claim your £500,000.00 winning prize, which has been deposited in the Barclay's Bank Plc, UK.
However, you will have to fill the form below and send it back to the Promotion Manager of BBC-ONE
CORPORATION for verification, while basking in the euphoria of this achievement, I wish to seize this
opportunity to acquaint you with guidelines as you must follow in order to complete your claims.
On our part, we have a mandate to see you through. We will work assiduously to realize this mandate as we
respect your views, opinions and most importantly protect your privacy. And then you will be directed on
how yout funds will be transfer to your country's central bank.
To ensure immediate transfer/delivery of your prize within 24 hours, You are advise to complete the form
below and send it back as soon as possible to our Promotion Manager through this
email address: email@example.com
1. Full Names:
2. Your Full Address
3. Your Age:
4. Your country:
5. Your Country of resident:
6. Your City:
7. Your Occupation:
10. Your Winning Email Address :
(CONTACT PROMOTION MANAGER)
Your Online coordinator
DR, ROBERTSON BENEDICT.
B.B.C Lottery Department,
National Lottery Results England.