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:
- "await your urgent response" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "you are advise to" (this email uses bad English)
- 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.
- +447045706078 (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: "George Owen" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 10 Jan 2013 21:50:55 +0100
Subject: United Nation Compensation Commission,
United Nation Compensation Commission,
Mr. George Owen.
UN Agent Officer
Notification From United Nations,
My name is Mr. George Owen. newly inaugurated United Nations Compensation Commission Agent (UN), My committee has a mandate to recover unpaid debts
associated with NNPC contracts, Lottery fund, inheritance fund, loans and grants etc ranging from $1M-$6.5M owed to various beneficiaries and companies across the globe (Asia, Europe, USA, Africa, and Australia) and
submit the list of the unpaid beneficiaries/companies to the 2 appointed official delivery service for immediate payment of the fund.
This meeting was first held on the 8th of April 2003. You can view this page for your perusal:http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2003/ik344.doc.htm
In the course of our investigation, your email address/particulars were shortlisted among the first fifteen individuals yet to be paid hence this email. However, we received a petition today from Mrs. Joyce Edison
stating that you are critically infected by Cancer of the Lungs and that you have some few months to live according to the doctor's report so therefore that you have given her the authorization to claim your fund on your behalf and as such your fund should be paid to her as heir apparent.
She also said that she is ready and willing to obtain all the procurement of the legal documents for the release of your fund to her as you have instructed, it will interest you to know that she has been held right away for verification purpose because of the elaborate global scam, we decided
to contact you once more for confirmation. If after seven working days, no response is received from you it will be assumed that you are ill indeed and as such authorization and approval will be granted on behalf of Mrs.Joyce Edison to claim/receive your fund.
You are advise to reconfirm your information and how you want your fund paid to you without further delay if you are healthy enough to check your mail.
Below is the information you are expected to re-confirm,
1. Full Name:____________________________
4. Age:____________Date of Birth:________
7. State of Origin:_______Country:_______
8. Drivers license:____________________
9. Copy Of Your Identity:________________
I await your urgent response to this office immediately.
Mr. George Owen.
UN Agent Officer