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:
- "dear sir/madam" (a standard Nigerian greeting phrase)
- "inheritance funds" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "million united states dollars" (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)
- ",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)
- "abuja" (a location commonly mentioned 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "ICPC NIGERIA (Anti-Fraud Unit)" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 16 Feb 2006 08:58:06 +0100
Subject: LETTER OF COMPENSATION/SETTLEMENT ?
ICPC NIGERIA (Anti-Fraud Unit)
MOTTO: We Fight Against Fraud, Funds Delay and Impersonation.
Head Office: Plot 802, Constitution Avenue
Zone A9 Central Area
P. M.B 535, Garki Abuja.
*****24HRS SERVICE *****
LETTER OF COMPENSATION/SETTLEMENT.
We hereby inform you that out of our records for the year investigation it is drawn to us that you
have been victimized by the men of underworld(Pretenders/impostors). However,the management has
been dutifully empowered by the Investigation bureau office of the President and
Commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of Federal Republic of Nigeria to curb all illicit
transaction and workload of this perpetrators.
In line with the Anti-corruption crusade of the Presidency, President Goodluck Jonathan (GCFR)you
are by this Email notification to stop any contact regarding this illegal transaction with this
Hoodlums.Out of our findings, the image of this country has been dented Internationally during the
past administration of the Federal Government of Nigeria.Presently,we have employed a strategy to
remit sanity,and vow to terminate the activity of this fraudsters,by consolidating our security
Network all over the country in view to monitor all outgoing and incoming communication to enable
us fish out and avert all illegal and suspicious transaction both domestically and internationally
Moreover,it occur that some of our Financial Institutions(Bank) serve as a condit pipe by which
this fraudsters use to perpetrate the undo crime.We have signal all these financial institutions
to implement scrutinized investigation before carrying any transaction.Any bank found culpable of
breaching the law,must have their operational license revoke.
In accordance with the criminal and other related offense act 25 of 1999 constitution, we have
been officially compel by Senator. A. Aminu(JP), Chairman, Senate committee on Foreign Affair to
mapped out billions of Dollars from the Annual Budget to compensate all defrauded victims as part
of the ongoing National Reform Scheme of the presidency and means to radiate immunity for
In view of this,we have been informed that you are still dealing with those hoodlums in all your
attempts to secure the release of your fund.We wish to advise you that such an illegal act has to
stop if you wish to receive your payment since we have decided to bring a solution to your
problem. Do be informed that we reserve the right at our discretion to sue you for damage on
recognition of further contact with this people.
By the strength of this development the sum of US$5.Million United States Dollars
(USD$5,000,000.00) has been SIGNED to each beneficiaries to be paid . This Memorandum is to notify
you that you will be settled with the sum of US$5.Million United States Dollars
(USD$5,000,000.00)/ your Inheritance /contract or lotto payment.
Kindly send the above information :
1. Your full name:
2. Your residential address:
3. Mobile and fax number (for regular official contact).
These above-mentioned informations will officially enable us to carry out our verification
processes and after that your compensation sum/Inheritance Funds will be approved in your name and
Electronically wired into your designated Bank account or by ATM Card delivery to your doorstep.,
depending on which mode of payment you prefer.
You are to contact this office upon receipt of this notification immediately to proceed for payment.
To fight corruption to a standstill and restore Nigeria to the enviable standard of respectability
and dignity of the nations.
Please do respond back to us with this email. ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
Hon. Justice Ayoola
Chairman ICPC Nigeria.
(Independent Corrupt Practice Commission,ICPC) w
Powered by Information Communication Technology Dept., (C) 2012 ICPC Nigeria, registered trademark.S.