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 fake company names, fake addresses, non-existent institutions/documents or other details have appeared in scams before:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "the consignment" (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)
- "trunk box" (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)
- "consignment " (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)
- "trunk boxes" (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)
- "million 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)
- "my direct line" (a "direct line" in a scam usually means an untraceable mobile phone number used by a scammer in an internet cafe, a redirection service number that forwards to a mobile or a free voicemailbox in a different country.)
- "diplomatic delivery" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- "executive governor" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- "central bank of nigeria" (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 (Yahoo, Hong Kong; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
- bank of nigeria (cbn) gov.sanusi lamido e-mail: email@example.com office +234-8061289773 this is to inform you that your (Yahoo; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "GOV.LAMIDO SANUSI" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 4 Apr 2014 10:06:42 +0100
Subject: This is to inform you that your deliveryman has arrived with your cash trunk boxes call him now with
CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA
FROM THE EXECUTIVE GOVERNOR,CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA (CBN)
THIS IS TO INFORM YOU THAT YOUR DELIVERYMAN HAS ARRIVED WITH YOUR CASH TRUNK BOXES VALUE $8.3 MILLION DOLLARS IN CHARLOTTE INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT NORTH CAROLINA USA, UNITED STATES AS THEIR TRANSIT.
I WANT YOU TO KNOW THAT YOU HAVE 24 HOURS TO CALL HIM NOW WITH THIS LINE (704)4692780 )OR EMAIL:POWAERIC367@YAHOO.COM.HK
,THEN ASK TO SPEAK TO THE
DIPLOMATIC DELIVERYMAN IN PERSON OF MR. ERIC POWA IN THE UNITED STATES. LET US KNOW IF YOU ARE STILL INTERESTED TO GET YOUR TWO TRUNK BOXES DELIVERED
TO YOU TODAY? AS HE HAS BEEN WAITING TO HEAR FROM YOU TO ENABLE HIM GET TO YOUR HOME ADDRESS WITHOUT MISSING HIS WAY.
FOR YOUR INFORMATION, THE DELIVERYMAN WITH YOUR PACKAGE IS NOT AWARE OF THE CONTENT OF THE BOXES FOR SECURITY PURPOSE. PLEASE DO NOT TELL HIM TO AVOID
RUNNING AWAY WITH YOUR FUNDS. ON NO ACCOUNT SHOULD YOU LET HIM KNOW ABOUT THE CONTENT OF THE CONSIGNMENT TO AVOID EVIL INTENSION.
MOST IMPORTANTLY YOU ARE ADVISED TO SEND YOUR FULL DATA TO HIM, WHICH INCLUDE YOUR FULL NAME, CURRENT RESIDENTIAL ADDRESS, DIRECT CELL NUMBER, AND A COPY
OF ANY IDENTITY CARD TO VERIFY THAT YOU ARE THE RIGHT RECEIVER TO AVOID MISTAKES.
NOTE THAT YOU MUST CALL ME AS SOON AS YOU RECEIVE THIS EMAIL FOR MORE DISCUSSION, MY DIRECT LINE IS +234-8061289773. ALSO RECONFIRM YOUR FULL CURRENT
ADDRESS AND VALID PHONE NUMBER TO THE DELIVERY OFFICER VIA HIS ABOVE EMAIL ADDRESS ONCE YOU RECEIVE THIS EMAIL TO ENABLE HIM DELIVER YOUR CASH
CONSIGNMENT BOXES TO YOUR HOUSE WITHOUT ANY FURTHER DELAY OR MISTAKE.
YOU ARE ADVISED NOT TO WASTE HIS TIME AT THE AIRPORT, SO THAT HE WOULD NOT BE STRANDED IN ANY WAY BECAUSE HE WILL RETURN IF HE FINDS OUT THAT YOU
ARE NOT DOING ANYTHING TO GET HIM OVER TO YOUR HOUSE.
MALLAM SANUSI LAMIDO AMINU,
CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA