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:
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: HOMELAND SECURITY <email@example.com>
Reply-To: HOMELAND SECURITY <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 20 Nov 2014 03:52:55 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: FROM HOMELAND SECURITY,USA
I am Mr.Jeh Charles Johnson. The secretary of the department of
homeland security Washington DC,an international summit was held in
West Africa and I'm one of the officials, after the meeting I found
out that your $4.5 million was abandoned here in West Africa maybe
because of malpractices, so kindly reconfirm your full address,
Full name, Phone number, and nearest Airport so that I shall bring
your parcel to our Head Office in Washington DC and you will come
and claim or we can send it to your designated address I wait for
your urgent and positive respond. You can reach me on this email as
Tele:+1 (941) 417-1323 text SMS only
For Calls: 404-424-4950
Mr.Jeh Charles Johnson