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.
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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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "MR. JAMES B. COMEY" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2014 14:06:47 +0100
Subject: READ VERY CAREFULLY AND FOLLOW MY INSTRUCTIONS AS NOTED;
Assistant Director in Charge Joseph Persichini, Jr FEDERAL BUREAU OF
INVESTIGATION FBI.WASHINGTON DC.
READ VERY CAREFULLY AND FOLLOW MY INSTRUCTIONS AS NOTED;
This is to officially inform you that it has come to our notice and we have
thoroughly completed an Investigated with the help of our Intelligence
Monitoring Network System that your fund worth of US$10.5M has been re-approved
today on your favor base on our conclusion in the meeting held with the board of
Note that the American government, President Obama have approved and assigned
the immediate payment on your favor, via ATM CARD PAYMENT DELIVERY without any
further delay, so therefore we advice that you furnish us your delivery
information as listed below; following our investigation, we has all your
details here in the office but we still urge you to reconfirm your information
to us once again for we to know if it is correct with what we have on file to
avoid any wrong delivery.
Kindly get back to me today also with the requested information so that we can
proceed on this matter as soon as possible.
1) Your full name.
2) Phone, fax and mobile #.
3) Residential address, position.
4) Profession, age and marital status.
5) Your nearest airport.
Know that we the federal bureau of investigation shall handle this transaction
by our authority and everything is going to work out fine as soon as you can
provide the information as required and stick to the instructions given to you
regarding the delivery. We shall advice you on whom to contact for the delivery
as we are working towards the approved certificates which we shall forward to
you once we hear from you.
Since the Federal Bureau of Investigation has been involved in this transaction,
you are now to be rest assured that this transaction is legal, legitimate and
completely risk-free as it is our duty to protect and Serve beneficiaries and to
make sure that you receive your Contract Inheritance Payment Fund.
Please follow the instruction and reply back to this important notice for your
interest to facilitate the onward release of your payment.
READ AND FOLLOW MY INSTRUCTIONS AS NOTED AND URGENTLY GET BACK TO US;
We are at your service.
Mr. James B Comey
The New FBI Director
Federal Bureau of Investigation.
J. Edgar Hoover Building
935 Penns ylvania Avenue,
NW Washingt on, D.C.