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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "waiting for your urgent response" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "contact me immediately" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "central bank of nigeria" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: James Scott <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 4 Sep 2009 07:33:07 -0800
Subject: RE-CHANGE OF ACCOUNT
RE-CHANGE OF ACCOUNT
This is in regard to outstanding payment, I am Mr. James Scott,the Newly
appointed Director United Nation Legal Affairs, Security and Investigation,
the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (Chief YAR`ADUA) and his
Decision Making Body, the Executive Arms of the Government, has directed me
to come down to Nigeria to Investigate your Fund and to make sure that we
approve all outstanding debts owned to Foreign beneficiaries by the
government of Nigeria in this 1st quarter of this Fiscal year 2009.
This decision was taken based on the abnormities and inability of the BANKS
in Nigeria to Release your fund into your bank account whereby it was
discovered that some Directors in Central bank of NIGERIA being the Federal
Government of Nigeria were diverting foreign beneficiaries payment to
another account of their choice overseas. In view of this, during our
investigation I found out that an account was submitted to divert your fund
to a Germany account. Below is the account submitted and I want you to
confirm if you are aware of the new development because we are about
effecting payment to the account stated bellow today.
Beneficiary: CERSTIN WENGER SHENOUDA
Bank: FRANKFURTER BANK
A/C No.: 367840545
Finally, be informed that a payment instruction has been issued and
Forwarded to the Treasury Department of the Federal Government of Nigeria In
favor of you and your company for immediate release of your fund to the
account above without any further prejudice. But there is no way We can
approve the fund to your account without you confirming if you Have changed
your account for your fund to be transfer to the Beneficiary: CERSTIN WENGER
SHENOUDA BANK ACCOUNT IN GERMANY.
Contact me immediately for further clarification to know if you have Giving
instruction to transfer your fund to the above account today. On behalf Of
the entire management of United Nations, we are congratulating you in
advance and if you fail to contact this office on or before 24hrs from now
then we will now wire the fund to the German account.
Thanks for your co-operation.
Waiting for your urgent response
Un Office of Legal Affairs Security and Investigation.