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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- ",000,000" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "00,000.00" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- 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.
- 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: "United Nations Organization" (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 19 Jun 2011 08:29:44 -0700
Subject: ((Contact Dr. Jim Ovia Asap))
United Nations Compensation Unit, In Affiliation with World Bank.
We wish to inform you that the UN / WORLD BANK ORGANIZATION facilitated around-table meetings which just ended some days ago, and it has been agreed upon that compensation payment of US$5,000,000.00 should be paid to scammed individuals whose Name and E-mail have been chosen through an open E-mail ballot system. Your email was included and that is why we have contacted you.
These also includes every foreign contractors that may have not received their contract sum and people that have had an unfinished transaction or international businesses that failed due to Government problems or the other etc. Also, we have been receiving complains from beneficiaries informing us that they are yet to receive the payment due scams emanating from Africa as well.
However, it is my pleasure to inform your Bank Draft No: 158545*90*3365*99940333 have been reserved for you which contain your certified amount. So you are hereby advised to contact our payment representative in Africa affiliated with ZENITH PAYMENT CENTER with your payment code: 82509.
You are advised to contact Dr. Jim Ovia of our paying center in Africa, as he is our representative in Africa, contact him immediately for your Cheque/ International Bank Draft of USD$5,000,000.00. This fund is in a Bank Draft for security purpose ok? So he will send it to you and you can clear it in any bank of your choice there in your country.
You are to contact Dr. Jim Ovia at the address below:
Contact Person: Dr. Jim Ovia
You are required to contact the above person and furnish him with the following of your information that will be required to avoid any mistakes:-
1. Your Full name:
2. Your Country:
3. Contact Address:
4. Telephone Number:
5. Fax Number:
6. Marital Status:
Congratulations, and I look forward to hear from you as soon as you confirm your payment making the world a better place.
UN Secretary General