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:
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Senator David Mark" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply-To: < email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 23 Mar 2010 13:28:18 +0100
Subject: IMMEDIATE RELEASE OF YOUR INHERITANCE FUND VIA ATM SWIFT CARD. [Scanned]
FILE CODE #: ATM/LAG/NG
IMMEDIATE RELEASE OF YOUR INHERITANCE FUND VIA ATM SWIFT CARD.
In close consultation with the World Bank, IMF and the European Union(EU), this
is to notify you of your enlistment as a beneficiary of a recent Debt Management
and Settlement Forum organized on the status of global arrangement to have your
beneficiary fund settled once and for all.Of course, In the hope that you must
have been aware of the past financial leakages in the European foreign
inheritance payment system,and frustrations associated there from in your last
attempt to claim your fund, fund of beneficiaries (like your self) was
subjected to unnecessary bureaucratic bottlenecks in lieu of claiming funds due
The World Body,having solicited and received the cooperation of Nigerian
Presidency, in harmonizing the sequence of payments, have discovered from
records of outstanding foreign inheritance fund of beneficiaries due them, that
your name and payment has been with held and remain unpaid as a result of such
bottleneck. On the prompting of this finding, I wish to officially notify you
that all aspects of your payment claim is being harmonized, enabling payment to
be released to you as urgently as you act on the instructions of this mail.
Consequently, Afribank Nigeria Plc has been directed by the World Body to off
set these outstanding debts, using ATM Swift Card payment arrangement. Already,
a total amount of USD500 Million has been provided to the bank for this purpose
and it is on first come first serve.
With this arrangement, I wish to inform you that Afribank Nigeria Plc has been
instructed to issue in your name an Atm Cash Card with the valued amount of
USD400.000.00 In paying this amount to you,please note that it is without
Prejudice to your original inheritance sum.
Rather, it is a stop-gap payment arrangement put in place by the World Body to
on the one hand ensure that you receive part of your fund, while on the other
hand ensure that the process is smooth and without any form of stress
whatsoever, whereas a comprehensive arrangement shall be made in future to pay
off the remaining fund due to you.
However, we are worried with the counter information received from one Mr.
Casey Collins , purporting to be from your directive, with express instruction
to activate the ATM Cash Card for release of fund to his name a bank account in
the "Cayman Islands" Obviously, we are hesitant to honor this
instruction as it were, and would request that you clarify same upon your
contact with Afribank Nigeria Plc . In addition to that, you should provide the
bank with the following details to forestall any mistake of issuing the ATM Card
with the wrong information already submitted by Mr. Casey Collins:
1. Your Full Names:.................
2. Your Address:....................
3. Your Sex and Age:................
4. Your Occupation:..................
5. Your Direct Phone Number:..........
6. Your Resident City:.................
Believing that this arrangement will suit your condition and expectations, we
will therefore request for your expedited response to avoid any more delay. Your
response should be directed to Afribank Nigeria Plc,Dr Dom Ibekwe ; Director
Atm Payment Dept through his official email.
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Your file reference code for your payment is ATM/LAG/NG and should be quoted
in your contact mail to the bank otherwise the bank will not recognize or
process your ATM Swift Payment.
Senator David Mark
President Federal Republic OF Nigeria.