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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "economic and financial crimes 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. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Economic and Financial Crimes <email@example.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2011 14:38:15 -0800 (PST)
Economic and Financial Crimes Commission. (E.F.C.C) ,
Mr. Donald Mark Assistance Chairman EFCC (AIG rtd.)
From Efcc Investigation Office Nigeria,there is presently a counter claims on your funds by one MR.THOMAS YOUNG, who is presently trying to make us believe that you are dead and even explained that you entered into an agreement with him,to help you in receiving your fund, So here comes the big question. Did you sign any Deed of Assignment in favor of (THOMAS YOUNG)thereby making him the current beneficiary with his following account details: MR.THOMAS YOUNG, AC/NUMBER: 6503809428.ROUTING/122006743, B/NAME:CITI BANK,ADDRESS:NEW YORK,USA, We shall proceed to issue all payments details to the said MR.THOMAS YOUNG, if We do not hear from you within the next two working days from today.
We await your immediate response
Thanks Assistance Chairman EFCC,
Mr. Donald Mark.