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.
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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 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.
Fraud email example:
From: "ATM Customers Care" (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 13 Nov 2010 22:18:13 +0100
This is to officially inform you that we have verified your Contract / Inheritance File presently on my desk, and I found out that you have not received your payment due to your lack of co-operation and not fulfilling the obligations giving to you in respect to your Contract /Inheritance Payment.
Secondly, you are hereby advice to stop dealing with some Non-officials in the bank as this is an illegal act and will have to stop if you so wish to receive your payment immediately. After the board meeting held at our headquarters, we have resolved in finding a solution to your problem, and as you may know, we have arranged your payment through our SWIFT CARD PAYMENT CENTRE in Europe, America and Asia Pacific, which is then instruction given by our president, Federal Republic of Nigeria.
This card centre will send you an ATM MASTER CARD which you will use to withdraw your money in an ATM MASTER MACHINE in any part of the world, but the maximum is ($25,000.00) Twenty Five Thousand United States Dollars per transaction. So, if you like to receive your fund this way, $25,000 USD for you to withdraw for a day and each transaction is $5,000USD minimum which you have to withdraw $25,000 USD for one working day also be informed that the total amount in the SWIFT ATM CARD is $1 Million USD.
(1) Your Full Name:
(2) Your Address:
(3) Phone and Fax Number:
(4) Age and Occupation:
(5) Your Nearest International Air Port in your City of residence:
We shall be expecting to receive your information, you have to stop any further communication with anybody or office. On this regards, do not hesitate to contact me for more details and direction, and also please do update me with any new development. Call me on +234 80 946 71908 as soon as you send the above informations.
Thanks for your co-operation.
Mr. Tony Ene
Zenith Bank of Nigeria.