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:
- "from the desk of" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "contact the atm card center" (this phrase is often used in the ATM card payment scam)
- "western union" (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "economic and financial crime commission" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- "(efcc)" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- "farida waziri" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- "central bank of nigeria" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- "lagos" (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.
- Western Union money transfer is completely untraceable and therefore is *not* safe to use with anyone you do not know personally. It is the preferred method of online criminals to collect money from their victims.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "micheal moore" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 26 Jan 2011 11:22:47 +0100
NIGERIA INVESTIGATION BUREAU
14A AWOLOWO LANE, IKOYI
Motto: No Body is Above the LAW
FROM THE DESK OF Mr.Michael Moore: (Assistance).
FOR: ECONOMIC & FINANCIAL CRIMES COMMISSION (EFCC).
Records show that you are among one of the individuals and organizations who are yet to receive their overdue payment from overseas which includes those of
Lottery/Gambling, Contract and Inheritance. Through our Fraud Monitory Unit we have also noticed that over the past you have been transacting with some impostors and
fraudsters who have been impersonating the likes of Prof. Soludo of the Central Bank Of Nigeria, Mr. Patrick Aziza, Frank, Anderson, none officials of Oceanic Bank,
Zenith Banks, Kelvin Young of HSBC, Ben of FedEx, Ibrahim Sule, Dr. Usman Shamsuddeen and some impostors claiming to be The Federal Bureau of Investigation.
The Cyber Crime Division of the FBI gathered information from the Internet Crime Complaint Center (ICCC) formerly known as the Internet Fraud Complaint Center (IFCC)
of how some people have lost outrageous sums of money to these impostors. As a result of this we hereby advise you to stop communication with any one not referred to
you by us
We have negotiated with the Federal Ministry of Finance that your payment totaling $850,000.00 be released to you via a custom pin based ATM card with a maximum
withdrawal limit of $3,000 a day which is powered by Visa Card and can be used anywhere in the world were you see a Visa Card Logo on the Automatic Teller Machine
(ATM). We have advised that this should be the only way at which you are to receive your payment because its more guaranteed, since over $5 billion was lost on fake
check year 2008.
We guarantee 100% receipt of your payment, because we have perfected everything in regards to the release of your $850,000.00 United States Dollars to be 100% risk
free and free from any hitches as its our duty to protect you. (This is as a result of the mandate from US Government to make sure all debts owed to people which
includes Inheritance, Contract, Gambling/Lottery etc are been cleared for the betterment of the current economic status of the nation and its citizens as he bas always
believed Our Time for Change has come because Change can happen
To redeem your fund you are hereby advised to contact the ATM Card Center via email for their requirement to proceed and procure your Approval of Payment Warrant and
Endorsement of your ATM Release Order on your behalf which will cost you $135 only nothing more and no hidden fees as everything else has been taken cared of by the
Federal Government including taxes, custom paper and clearance duty so all you will ever need to pay is $135 only.
Name: michael moore
Phone: +234 805 100 3555
Do contact Mr. Andrew Lamar of the ATM Card Center via his contact details above and furnish him with your details as listed below,calling him on his hot line will be
faster than to email him:
Your full Name:
On contacting him with your details your files would be updated and he will be sending you the payment information in which you will use in making payment of $135.00
via Western Union Money Transfer for the procurement of your Approval of Payment Warrant and Endorsement of your ATM Release Order. After which the delivery of your
ATM card will be effected to your designated home address without any further delay, extra fee or any authority raising eyebrow.
Upon receipt of payment the delivery officer will ensure that your package is sent within 24 working hours. Because we are so sure of everything we are giving you a
100% money back guarantee if you do not receive your ATM CARD Shippment Confirmation within the next 24hrs after you have made the payment for shipping.
Once again we are so sure of you receiving your payment at no any other cost as we have taking it upon our duty to monitor everything in other to cub cyber crime that
is perpetrated by those impostors.
Thanks and hope to read from you soon.
Mr.Michael Moore: (Assistance)
Mrs.Farida Waziri: (Chairman) Economic And Financial Crime Commission