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:
- "money laundering" ("anti-terrorist", "anti-money laundering" or "drug-free" certificates are a common way for criminals in fake lottery scams and other Advance Fee scams to get you to send money to them. There are no such certificates in the real banking world. )
- "huge amount of money" (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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mrs Christine Lagarde(IMF DIRECTOR)" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 8 Oct 2014 18:38:49 -0500
Subject: REGARDING TO YOUR FUNDS ONHOLD WITH IMF uk
I am sorry for my late response towards your unpaid fund which Dr. Kahn placed it ONHOLD when he was on sit before his resignation.
Firstly we introduce this commission, INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND (IMF), we fight cuber crime, Internet fraud, scam and money laundering in any part of the world, Our commission has been in existences since 2002 and our duty is to stop internet fraud. We have over 7,500 of them in our jails around Africa and we are still looking for these internet fraudsters and we are aware that a lot of foreigners have been deceived and huge amount of money has also been lost to this fraudsters after promising you percentages in their letters for you to help them move funds and they will end up demanding for money from you and in return you will get nothing.
The Leaders of the Africa Crime fighters, INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND (IMF) has come together to inform the world what is going on now and we have recovered over $422 Million Dollars (Four Hundred and Twenty two Million Dollars) from the people we have apprehended. The reason we are writing you this letter is because your name was given to us by one of the fraudsters in our detention room after serious investigation and our aim is to refund all lost fund to its legitimate owner.
However, It is my pleasure to inform you that i have your file on my desk as the new appointed IMF director and i will look forward to hearing from you soon for further question and information before releasing your fund to your designated bank account.
You can know more about me here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christine_Lagarde
I wish you and your family wondeful day
Mrs Christine Lagarde