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:
- "swift card payment center" (this phrase is often used in the ATM card payment scam)
- "to your nominated bank account" (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.
Fraud email example:
From: "REV MARTINS CHIDEGO" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 18 Sep 2012 21:26:37 -0300
Subject: INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND AGENCY
This is to officially inform you that we the International Monetary Fund Agency has verified your contract/inheritance file and found out that why you have not received your part payment of 20 million usd is because you have not fulfilled the obligations given to you in respect of your contract/inheritance payment.
Secondly we have been informed that for have been dealing with non-officials in the bank which makes your fund not released to you, So we wish to advise you that such an illegal act like these have to stop if you wish to receive your payment since we have decided to bring a solution to your problem and have your fund transferred to your nominated bank account.I am a Man of integrity and Character,and always keep to my words.In as much as you follow my directives we will definitely achieve success and have your fund transfer to your nominated bank account without any delay.
Right now we have arranged your payment through our swift card payment center Asia pacific that is the latest instruction from MR. PRESIDENT.GOODLUCK JONATHAN (GCFR) FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA, EFCC CHAIRMAN As well as the INTERPOL and FBI in conjunction with HOMELAND SECURITY, so you have absolutely nothing to be afraid of and due the previous scam and fraud act from imposters in our country we have mapped out that this card is sent to your personal address so, This Financial Consultant will Transfer the fund to your nominated bank account with any charge in Nigeria.
And also send the following information:
1. Your full name
2. Phone and fax number
4. Your age and current occupation
5. Attach copy of your identification
The FINANCIAL CONSULTANT has been mandated to issue out part payment for this fiscal year 2011/2012 payment year. Also for your information, you have to stop any further communication with any other person(s) or office(s) to avoid any hitches in receiving your Payment.
For oral discussion, call and email me back as soon as you receive this important message for further direction and also update me on any development from the above-mentioned office. Note that because of impostors, we hereby issued you our code of conduct, which is (822) so you have to indicate this code when contacting me. Kindly call me with telephone number below once you receive this mail.
REV MARTINS CHIDEGO
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND AGENCY
INTERNATIONAL OPERATION DEPT