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:
- 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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Ernest sewell" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 8 Aug 2012 17:56:42 +1000
Subject: FROM FEDERAL RESERVE BANK
this is to notify you that we just receive sum of $4.5 million inheritance funds that was transfer from Nigeria to America which was going to your bank accont, but the new banking rules here is that any funds that came in from Africa must stop here in the federal reserve bank, so that the real owner of the inheritance funds will pay for the U.S tax percentage which U.S Government has made to be small amount so that all the beneficiaries can be able to pay the $2.550usd before receiving their funds into the provided account.
phone number: 347-430-4154
we await your response as soon as possible.
Ernest j. sewell