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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "lagos" (a location commonly mentioned 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.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr J.B Amir" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 19 Sep 2014 18:59:14 +0100
Subject: Please Call Mr J.B Amir(+234 807 306 8956) To Confirm 2014/19/09
From:Mr J.B Amir
Manchester M27 5FX,
+234 807 306 8956
This is to inform you that your funds of US$7.5 Million
has been approved for immediate release to you.
For the purpose of clarification,you are advised to
reconfirm your Full Names,Direct Telephone
Numbers,Physical Address with Zip Code so that there
will be no error during the release of the funds via online transfer to
your designated bank account in your country of residence.
Your quick response will be highly appreciated.
From:Mr J.B Amir
This email is free from viruses and malware because avast! Antivirus protection is active.