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:
- "will come to you as a surprise" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "hundred thousand united state 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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- 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.
- +447031866203 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
- +447023051653 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs. Eunice Dibulle" <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 25 Jul 2012 04:24:40 +0700 (WIT)
From: Mrs. Eunice Dibulle.
APPROVED EMAIL No: 1
7 ST JOHNS HILL,
SW 11 1 TN, LONDON
Batch No. Lott o 6/49
Dear Microsoft Client/User,
It is obvious that this notification will come to you as a surprise but
please find time to read it carefully as we congratulate you over your
success in the following official publication of results of the E-mail
electronic online Sweepstakes organized by the Google Incorporation, in
conjunction with the foundation for the promotion of software products,
(F.P.S.) held here in London. Wherein your email address emerged as one of
the online Winning emails in the 2nd category and therefore attracted a
cash award of ($400,000.00USD.Four Hundred Thousand United State Dollars).
Google being the world leading search engine worldwide, and in an effort
to make sure that it remains the most widely used search engine, an online
beta e-mail promotion was carried out recently in London, hence you were
contacted in view of this. Please note that your email address was
provided to us by the W3C on request amongst other email addresses
currently from Europe, America, Asia, Africa and Middle East present on
the internet, but your email address emerged as one of the five lucky
You have therefore won the entire sum of ($400,000.00USD (Four Hundred
Thousand United State Dollars) and a certificate of winning prize prove
shall be sent/dispatch to by winners reconfirmation department head by
(Mr. Lee Porter Edward) upon the confirmation of your datas. You are
advised to contact the verification processing Manager with your below
stipulated winning numbers together with your details to avoid unnecessary
delay of your winning prize or complications:
CONTACT YOUR PROCESSING DIRECTOR
Mr. Mr. Lee Porter Edward
Tel: +44 7031866203
REF NUMBER: SA/NL3-SARM-FIFLL373
BATCH NUMBER FISA-354-TWDD77
INSURANCE NUMBER: SA/NL3/113/SART88
WINNING NUMBER: 11 12 18 21 30 37/1
FULL NAME: FULL ADDRESS: COUNTRY OR ORIGIN: MALE/FEMALE: AGE: TELE & FAX:
Google Corporation has discovered a huge number of double claims before
due to winners disclosing their winning information's to on trust worthy
entities /friends/ relatives/ and third parties. Which finally prompted a
double identity of winning prize claim with a particular wining numbers
and that leads to an unforeseen problems that option the winning file been
place on immediate annulled. The Google Online Team has reached a decision
from headquarters this year to avoid replicate of the previous problem. So
you are hereby strongly advised once more to be conscious of disclosing
your winning information.
Note: This is not a Lottery, it is a promotion therefore if we discover
any abuse or false pretense you will be disqualified, banned and sanction
Thanks and Congratulations.
From: Mrs. Eunice Dibulle
Google Corporation Network Lottery, 2012 World Promotional Draw.