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)
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- "courier service" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- "courier company" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- 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.
- 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 (Yahoo, France; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: MR TERRY PHILLIP <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 28 Jan 2013 20:20:09 +0800 (CST)
Subject: YOUR PAYMENT VIA ATM CARD !!
YOUR PAYMENT VIA ATM
After due vetting and evaluation of your file that was
sent to us by the African Development Bank(ADB),Under the direct authorization
of the African Union Office Benin Republic in Conjunction with the United
Nations,we wish to bring to your notice that orders given by the Presidency and
the entire house of senate for the year 2011-2012 is that my bank is the chosen
to pay out all foreign contract/inheritance funds,
bank was ordered after meeting held in the presidential villa to contact and
proceed with payment of your contract/inheritance Funds by informing you that
the former bank in charge of your payment via ATM card being,Zenith Bank,Union
Bank,Eco Bank ETC is no longer in charge of this payment.
note that your (7.5Million) outstanding payment has been approved and ready to
be paid but we want to confirm first from you by giving you our mode of payment
this arrangement was agreed between the African Development Bank(ADB),African
Union Office Benin Republic,United Nations, Presidency and the Senate committees
so take note that we have three modes of Payment delivery via ATM CARD to your
home address as all means to receive your Fund through Banks had
of payment of which you must choose one that will be more convenient to you
COURIER COMPANY) 3DAYS DELIVERY
COURIER EXPRESS) 3DAYS DELIVERY
COURIER SERVICE) 4DAYS DELIVERY
cost of delivery will be verify immediately we receive your email with your
reconfirm your full information's such as
Your Home Address:
Your Contact Home Phone Number:
Your Next Of Kin:
Your Choice of
A Scan Copy of your Identity:
You are expected to
provide the needed information correctly to avoid mistake during the delivery by
any choosen courier service of your choice,further more,you are advice to stop
all contact with any office,organization or individual claiming to be in charge
of your fund,After following the instructions above you will receive your ATM
CARD without any delay,feel free to call me for oral discussions.you can contact
me via email listed below (email@example.com)
or call for oral discussion and also note that you will pay for the delivery of
your ATM CARD
will require you to get back to this office with your decision over a Chosen
mode of payment and we will take it from there,
urgent response will be highly appreciated
This communication is privilege and confidential and should only be viewed by
the intended recipient If you have received this communication in error, please
us immediately by return e-mail, and then immediately destroy this
communication. Any unauthorized use of the contents of this communication is
expressly prohibited. Our confidentiality, privilege or copyright is not waived
or lost if you received this communication in error. The views expressed in this
communication are those of the individual sending it , and do not necessarily
reflect the views of Commercial Bank.