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:
- "atm payment department" (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. )
- "courier company" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- "email@example.com" (this email address looks like addresses used in "ATM SWIFT card" 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.
- +447045782658 (UK, redirects to a mobile phone in another country)
- 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: "Lloyds Bank® Plc." (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 7 Aug 2011 23:25:40 +0200
Subject: Your Lloyds Bank® ATM CARD.
ATM International credit Settlement.
Directorate of International Payment.
This is to officially notify you about your Fund that was suppose to be rendered to you via numerous ways i.e,Courier Companies,Western Union Money Transfers and Banks.Due to this lost of Funds of your's which was suppose to be given to you but failed to.So in this case,a beneficial meeting was held on the 10th of January 2011 at the World Bank in Switzerland,which top officials and Central Bank Governors from different countries in the world were present at the meeting.Which they discussed on how your Fund can be given to you without any loss at this time,which you have to stop any further communication with any other person(s) or office(s) to avoid any hitches in receiving your ATM payment.
In conclusion at the meeting,The President of World Bank Mr.Robert B.Zoellick has strictly authorized 6 Banks in the World to deliver all Funds through courier companies.Your Fund which is truly $2.5 Million USD (Two Million,Five Hundred Thousand United States of America Dollars)to all beneficiaries in various countries in the world as an ATM MASTER CARD.Below are the authorized Banks;
Caja De Madrid/Madrid/Spain.
Diamond Bank® Plc/Lagos/Nigeria.
Banco di Santo Spirito/Rome/Italy.
Bank of NewYork Mellon Corp/NewYork/USA.
Each of this Banks are to distribute 350 ATM MASTER CARDS to every beneficiaries in the World that are to receive their compensation ATM CARD,so this Bank(Lloyds Bank®Plc.) will send you your ATM CARD which you will use to withdraw your money in any ATM machine in any part of the world,but the maximum withdrawal is $50,000 Usd per day while minimum withdrawal is $20,000 Usd per day.Note that this ATM CARD of yours have been activated and a security pin code number will be issued to you from this Bank as soon as you receive your Card for a safer withdrawal.Please contact the ATM CARD payment department Manager Mr.Kelvin Smith by sending your information to him for an immediate response.Contacts of Mr.Kelvin Smith are as below;
Mr.Kelvin Smith. Director of ATM payment department Lloyds Bank Plc.
Office Telephone Line:+447045782658
NOTE:FOR NON APPEARANCES,DO NOT CONTACT MR.KELVIN SMITH, IF YOU CAN NOT PAY FOR THE SHIPPING OF YOUR ATM CARD.
Your Full Name:...............
Contact Home/Cell Phone:...................
A Scan Copy of your Identity:.......................
Please make a Choice of delivery for the Shipping of your ATM CARD as they are as charged Below;
DHL COURIER COMPANY>>>>>>Shipping fee: $330.00 (1 day delivery)
FedEX COURIER COMPANY>>>>Shipping fee: $210.00 (2 day delivery)
UPS COURIER COMPANY>>>>>>Shipping fee: $150.00 (3 day delivery)
For oral discussion,you can reach Mr.Kelvin Smith on email or call his office telephone line given to you above as soon as you receive this important message for further directions and also update him on any development from the above mentioned office.Note that is because of impostors, we hereby issued you our code of conduct, which is (ATM) so you have to indicate this code when contacting the card center by using it as your subject.
Chief Remittance Officer,
Lloyds Bank® Plc,
And In Respect of The World Bank®.