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:
- "claim agent" (real lotteries do not use a "claim agent" / "fiduciary agent")
- 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.
- 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: "Mrs. Teresa Allan" <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 7 Dec 2018 04:44:35 +0100
Subject: YOU HAVE WON $150,000.00
FACEBOOK INTERNATIONAL LOTTERY
Facebook Corporate Office & Headquarters
1 Hacker Way, Menlo Park, California 94025
INTERNATIONAL PROMOTIONS/PRIZE AWARD.
CONGRATULATIONS FROM FACEBOOK!!!
Facebook is one of the largest Social Networking site which valued
more than $100
Billion Dollars and also expecting its One Billion Users to come
mainly from Mobile
devices than desktop Users by this year 2018, Facebook founder Mark
decided to boost Users and Companies a WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY by
organizing a Lottery Program and Initial Public Offer said in a press
We are pleased to inform you of the result of this YEAR 2018 DRAW held
Lottery Company in cash Promotion to encourage the usage of Facebook
users world wide. Your Email Address was entered on our web Advert for
the Facebook yearly anniversary promotions Prize award contest and
your Email address has been selected as one of the winners in the 2nd
category for this years Facebook Lottery Online Sweepstakes Promotion.
You have just won a total sum of US$150,000.00(One Hundred and Fifty
Thousand United States Dollars) from the Facebook Lottery yearly
anniversary promotions Prize award for this year. The lottery program
which is a new innovation by Facebook, is aimed at saying A BIG THANKS
to all our users for making Facebook their number one Social
Networking site to hook up with their families and friends all over
All participants were randomly selected world wide through computer
and was electronically played on behalf of every individuals and companies that
have e-mail addresses on the internet through e-mail computer ballot system.
Please note that your lucky winning number falls within our Afro-booklet
representative office in Africa as indicated in your play coupon. In
view of this,
payment would be made to you by our Regional Payment Centre in Africa,
To claim your winning prize, you are hereby required to contact our
claim agent Via
email for the processing of your payment by providing him with the under listed
Contact Information given below:
Claim Agent: Mr. Richard Kolawole
To receive your Prize, you are expected to reply this email for the
processing of your
payment by providing us with the under listed information's as soon as possible.
1. Your name in full:.
3. Contact Address:.
4. Telephone Number:.
6. Marital Status:.
Your winning prize will be transferred to you as soon as you contact
our claim agent
and provide him with the requested details. It is important that you
keep the contents
of this email to your self until you receive your prize. This is part
of our security
protocol to avoid double claiming and unwarranted abuse of this program by some
Congratulations once more from all members and staffs of this program for being
part of our promotional program.
Mrs. Teresa Allan
FACEBOOK (c) 2018
Sweepstakes International Program.
The FACEBOOK International Lottery is approved by the American Gaming
Board and also Licensed by the International Association of Gaming
NOTE: If you received this message in your SPAM/BULK folder, that is
because of the restrictions implemented by your Internet Service
Provider, we (FACEBOOK LOTTERY) urge you to treat it genuinely.
Copyright Â© 2018 The Facebook International Lottery Inc.