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:
- "high court" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "federal high court" (This court is often mentioned in '419' scams to give the victim a reason why he/she should send thousands of dollars to the scammers. A 'Federal High Court' exists in Germany and Nigeria, but not in other countries, such as the UK, Spain, Netherlands, Senegal, Benin, South Africa or other countries where fake lawyers in scams often claim to be based. )
- "courier company" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- "(ecowas)" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: jerrycook <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 14 Dec 2013 05:04:53 +0100 (CET)
Subject: YOUR URGENT CALL (559)8007460 OR E-MAIL
NOTE:THIS IS YOUR PACKAGE REGISTERED CODE NO OVX950.
I want to acknowledge you that we have finally succeeded in getting your
package worthâs of $7.5m out of (ECOWAS) department with the help of Mr.
George Attorney General of Federal High Court of Justice Benin.so you
are advised to reconfirm your full delivery information to the DHL delivery
Agent Jerry cook right now as he is currently at San Diego Intl Airport
California USA,Make sure the bellow stated codes are identified when
him and the content of the box should not be revealed for his does not know
content as it's a VIP Delivery dispatched directly from my office and
director of the Company
SHIPMENT CODE GJK72DWQ
PACKAGE REGISTERED CODE NO OVX950.
SECURITY CODE EYTU/3055WEZ/263/
TRANSACTION CODE 7126/JLFS/7138/17305/
CERTIFICATE DEPOSIT CODE MCBS/PQLE/2-6/41
Your Full Name=============
Mobile Phone Number========
Nearest Airport ===========
your occupation ===========
Current Home Addess========
his name is Jerry cook
Rev. Dr. DOUGLAS MORRISON
CALL ME AFTER GOING THROUGH
THE EMAIL +229-6801-7715
The Director of DHL Courier Company