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 united states 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)
- ",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)
- "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.
- 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: "ICPC NIGERIA (Anti-Fraud Unit)" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 19 Sep 2019 00:23:52 -0700
Subject: LETTER OF COMPENSATION/SETTLEMENT
ICPC NIGERIA (Anti-Fraud Unit)
Head Office: Plot 802, Constitution Avenue
Zone A9 Central Area Garki Abuja.
P. M.B 535,
TEL : +2347011459171
LETTER OF COMPENSATION/SETTLEMENT
We hereby inform you that out of our records for the year investigation it
is drawn to us that you have been victimized by the men of
However, the management has been dutifully empowered by the Investigation
bureau office of the President and Commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces
of Federal Republic of Nigeria to curb all illicit transaction and workload
of this perpetrator.
In line with the Anti-corruption crusade of the President Muhammadu Buhari
(GCFR)you are by this email notification to stop any contact regarding to
your illegal transaction with this international fraudsters called in
Out of our findings there is no any inheritance, Contract and Lottery
payment in your favor or name in Nigeria and the image of this country has
been dented internationally during the past administration of the Federal
Government of Nigeria .
Presently, we have employed a strategy to remit sanity and vow to terminate
the activity of this fraudsters by consolidating our security Network all
over the country in view to monitor all outgoing and incoming communication
to enable us fish out and avert all illegal and suspicious transaction both
domestically and internationally respectively.
Moreover, it occurs that some of our Financial Institutions (Bank) serve as
a Condit pipe by which this fraudsters use to perpetrate the undo crime. We
have signal all these financial institutions to implement scrutinized
investigation before carrying any transaction any bank found culpable of
breaching the law must have their operational
In accordance with the criminal and other related offense act 25 of 1999
constitution we have been officially compel by Senator. A.Aminu(JP),
Chairman Senate committee on Foreign Affair to mapped out billions of
Dollars from the Annual Budget to compensate all defrauded victims as part
of the ongoing National Reform Scheme of the president,
By the strength of this development the sum of US$5.Million United States
Dollars (USD$5,000,000.00) has been SIGNED to each beneficiaries as
compensation, so you will be receiving the above mentioned compensation
fund without fee.
Reply to this email:( email@example.com )
Be inform from this day that if we find out through security agency that
you are still in email and telephone communication with this criminals your
compensation payment will discard and terminated and you will report to the
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for questioning your transaction ,
Kindly send your address where we shall send the original documents of your
compensation by courier to you as it has approved
Reconfirm Your Full name,:.....
Your ID card, :......
Phone Number :.....
Your full address;.....
For more details on receipt of this mail contact this office.Await for your
Thanks for your anticipated cooperation in this .
Chairman ICPC Nigeria.
(Independent Corrupt Pratice Commission,ICPC)