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:
- 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:
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
- 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: "AMBASSADOR JOHNSON MOORE" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 10 Feb 2011 16:36:08 +0100
Subject: Urgent Payment Of Unpaid Funds
AMBASSADOR JOHNSON MOORE
FOREIGN AFFAIRS MINISTRY
MAPUTO STREET, OFF WUSE ZONE 3,
P.M.B.130 GARIK,ABUJA NIGERIA
FOR THE URGENT ATTENTION OF OUR UNPAID BENEFICIARIES
BY LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION REACHED ON TODAY FOLLOWING THE COMPLAINT AND PETITION RECEIVED BY THE OFFICE OF THE
PRESIDENT AND COMMANDER IN CHIEF OF THE ARMED FORCES OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA (MR.PRESIDENT GOODLUCK EBERE JOHNATHAN)
FROM FOREIGN BENEFICIARIES OVER THE NON-PAYMENT OF THEIR CLAIMS.
THIS PRESIDENTIAL COMMISSION ON FACT FINDING AND FOREIGN PAYMENT WAS INAUGURATED TO RELEASE IMMEDIATELY ALL THE PAYMENT
THAT HAVE RECEIVED PPROVAL LIKE YOURS.WE ARE PLEASED TO INFORM YOU THAT WE HAVE VERIFIED EVERY ASPECT OF YOUR PAYMENT AND
HAVE SUBMITTED A WRITTEN REPORT TO THE PRESIDENT OFNIGERIA, THE HOUSE OF SENATE AND THE FEDERAL HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVE
SUBCOMMITTEES ON FINANCE AND FOREIGN PAYMENT.
WE ARE GOING TO TRANSFER YOUR PAYMENT UPON RECEIVING YOUR CONFIRMATION BECAUSE WE ARE CONFUSED ON WHICH ACCOUNT TO MAKE THE
TRANSFER INTO AS WE RECEIVED A SWITZERLAND BANK ACCOUNT DETAILS FROM ONE MR. GARRY FAULKNER WHO CLAIMED TO BE THE RIGHTFUL
BENEFICIARY THEREBY CONTRADICTING YOUR EARLIER ACCOUNT DETAIL IN OUR DATA BANK.PLEASE CLARIFY THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION
(1). DID YOU AT ANY POINT TRANSFER YOUR RIGHT OF OWNERSHIP TO ONE MR. GARRY FAULKNER TO CLAIM AND RECEIVE THE PAYMENT ON YOUR BEHALF?
(2). HIS CLAIM WAS BACKED WITH A "DEED OF AGREEMENT "IN HIS FAVOUR THEREBY INDICATING THE FUND DESTINATION TO THE FOLLOWING ACCOUNT.
ACCOUNT NAME: MR.GARRY FAULKNER, ACCOUNT NO: 202-0000-60233 USD, BANK NAME: ANZ BANK, 3200 BASEL, SWITZERLAND, SWIFT CODE: ANZPUS3XXS.
ARE YOU AWARE OF THIS? YOU ARE REQUIRED AS A MATTER OF URGENCY TO CONFIRM THE LEGITIMACY OF THE ABOVE CLAIM AND THE REASON FOR SUCH CHANGE.
IN EVENT YOU DID NOT AUTHORIZE SUCH CLAIM.PLEASE CONFIRM TO US IMMEDIATELY BY WAY OF APPLICATION FOR PAYMENT STATING YOUR AUTHENTIC ACCOUNT
DETAILS AND AMOUNT FOR THE AUTHENTICATION AND NORMALIZATION.ALL LETTERS MUST BE ATTENTIONED TO ME THE CHAIRMAN OF THE
COMMISSION BARRISTER. JAMES AKU: YOU ARE REQUIRED TO SUBMIT THIS AUTHENTICATION BEFORE THE TRANSFER WILL BE EFFECTED AS
WE ARE BOUND TO RECOGNIZE MR. GARRY FAULKNER'S CLAIM AND RELEASE THE PAYMENT IF WE DO NOT RECEIVE YOUR SUBMISSION TO THIS
ENQUIRY AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE.WE DO NOT HAVE YOUR TELL AND FAX NUMBERS.
HENCE OUR REASON FOR SENDING YOU THIS MESSAGE BY EMAIL.PLEASE INDICATES YOUR DIRECT TELEPHONE AND FAX NUMBERS. AND CALL ME
IMMEDIATELY YOU READ THIS LETTER FOR MORE QUESTIONING.
AMBASSADOR JOHNSON MOORE