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:
- "inheritance funds" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- ",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)
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- "central bank of nigeria" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- 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 (Yahoo, Japan; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "Pay-Master General" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 25 May 2012 12:24:31 +0100
Subject: Re: Payment instruction to credit your account . 220.127.116.11
Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)
International Operations/Foreign funds
Re: Payment instruction to credit your account with the sum of US$10,000,000.00???
This is to notify you that your over due contract funds has been gazetted to be Released,via key telex transfer (KTT) direct wire transfer to you by the Senate house committee for foreign over due fund transfer. Meanwhile, a woman wrote to my office few days ago with a letter,claiming to be your True representative.All Over Due Inheritance/contract Funds winner prize have been recalled to Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Both Africa and Asia and USA, Europe.
Here are her information's
BANK: JPMORGAN CHASE & CO. - LA1-1908
ADDRESS: 2911 W. 70TH STREET, SHREVEPORT, LOUISIANA, U.S.A., 71108
Account Name:Elizabeth Rose Tolson
ROUTING NO: 065400137
ACCOUNT NO: 752649939
SWIFT CODE: CHASUS33
PERSONAL BANKER: MICHAEL COOPER
Please, do reconfirm to this office, as a matter of urgency if this woman is from you So that the Bank will not be held responsible for paying into the wrong account Name. Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has been approved and accredited by the Federal Ministry Of Finance and the Senate House committee for foreign over due fund,to pay all foreign Over due inheritance funds and contract to respective original beneficiaries this first quarter Payment of the year 2012.Base the meeting held with the new Governor and board of directors of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on 23/05/2012
Meanwhile, you are advice to get back to my office immediately with the requested details to enable us have your correct details to wire your fund: Send your reply to this email address(email@example.com)
1.Your First/Middle & Last Name:
2.Your Full Office or Residential Address:
3.Your Original Country of Origin:
5.Position Held in Office:
8.Residential Tel/Fax & Mobile Line:
10. The Official Amount Owed To You:
11. The Country Where you are expecting your claim from:
12.A certified Copy of your international passport or any scanned
However, we shall proceed to issue all payments details to the said Elizabeth Rose Tolson, if we do not hear from you within the next seven working days from today.