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:
- 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.
Fraud email example:
From: Lucky Dudjk <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 13 Jun 2011 13:35:45 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Request for Assistance Very Confidential A.T.M Gold Card.
ATTN: MY GOOD FRIEND.
I'M MR. LUCKY OLATU. THE A.T.M VISA GOLD CARD MANAGER, OF THE ECO BANK OF GHANA, ACCRA GHANA LTD.
I AM A 50 YEARS OLD, MARRIED MAN BLESSED WITH FOUR LOVELY KIDS. I AM A MAN OF PEACE, AND I DON T WANT PROBLEMS, I ONLY HOPE YOU CAN ASSIST ME.
IF YOU DONâ T WANT THIS PROPOSAL YOU CAN AS WELL FORGETS I EVEN CONTACTED YOU.
I HAVE PACKAGED A FINANCIAL TRANSACTION, THAT WILL BENEFIT YOU AND I ,AS THE MANAGER OF THE ECO BANK VISA CARD, IT IS MY DUTY TO SEND IN A FINANCIAL REPORT, TO MY HEAD OFFICE,.BUT IN THE COURSE OF THE LAST YEAR 2007, FISCAL REPORT, I DISCOVERED THAT MY BRANCH IN WHICH I AM THE MANAGER MADE ($ 45,000,000.00 USD) WHICH MY HEAD OFFICE, ARE NOT AWARE OF AND WILL NEVER BE AWARE OF. THIS FUND I HAVE PLACED IN WHAT WE CALL "ESCROW CALL".
AS AN OFFICER OF THIS BANK, I CANNOT BE DIRECTLY CONNECTED TO THIS MONEY, SO MY AIM OF CONTACTING YOU IS TO ASSIST ME, RECEIVE THIS MONEY THAT WILL BE TRANSFERED INTO THE ATM VISA GOLD CARD AND GET 30% OF THE TOTAL FUNDS AS COMMISSION.
THERE ARE PRACTICALLY NO RISK INVOLVED,
THE MONEY WILL BE TRANSFERED INTO AN ATM VISA GOLD CARD. ALL I NEED FROM YOU IS TO STAND CLAIM AS THE ORIGINAL DEPOSITOR OF THIS FUND, WHO MADE THE DEPOSIT WITH MY BRANCH, SO THAT MY HEAD OFFICE CAN ORDER THE TRANSFER INTO THE ATM VISA GOLD CARD, FOR YOU WHICH ARE NOW FIRST IN GHANA.
IF YOU ACCEPT TO WORK WITH ME I WILL APPRECIATE IT VERY MUCH.
KINDLY RESPOND TO ME IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK WE CAN WORK TOGETHER SO THAT WE CAN GO OVER THE DETAILS.
YOU CAN MAIL ME FOR MORE EXPLANATION. THANKING YOU IN ADVANCE, AND MAY GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUâRE FAMILY.
Â MR LUCKY OLATU.
Â ATM CARD MANAGER, ECO BANK LTD,