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.
- 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.
- +447011149231 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
Fraud email example:
From: BRITISH COLUMBIA NATIONAL LOTTERY BC-49 <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 26 Sep 2013 14:08:40 +0100
Subject: CONGRATULATIONS! BC-49 LOTTERY CHIP NO: IMP/73253CA/2013
Dear: e-Mail Winner,
This is to inform you that your e-Mail Address have WON you the sum of 1,550,952.00 (One Million Five Hundred And Fifty Thousand Nine Hundred And Fifty two Pounds Sterling) from the British Columbia National Lottery BC-49 Online Promo 2013. The Promotional Award was held on Wednesday 25th of September 2013 in Liverpool United Kingdom. Your e-mail address attached to draw No:1593. Confirm Winning: http://www.canada.com/life/lotteries/lottery_results.html and make a contact to collect your winning fund immediately, Fill the Information.
Winning No: 01 05 21 27 40 45
Bonus No: 06
BC-49 Lottery Chip NO: IMP/73253CA/2013
Contact Person: Sir. Nicholas Donnie
Tel: +44 701 114 9231
Fill Payment Processing Information Below:
6.Winning e-Mail Address:______
AVISO SOBRE CONFIDENCIALIDAD. La legislación española ampara el secreto de las comunicaciones. Este correo electrónico y sus anexos son estrictamente confidenciales. Si Vd. no es el destinatario del mismo, por favor, notifíquenoslo inmediatamente y destruya el original. No deberá copiar este mensaje ni sus anexos o usarlo para propósito alguno, ni divulgar su contenido a ninguna persona.
WARNING ABOUT CONFIDENTIALITY. Spanish law guarantees privacy in electronic communications. This message and its attachments are confidential. If you are not the intended recipient please, notify us immediately and destroy the original. You should not copy this message or use it for any purpose, nor disclose its content to any other person.