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:
- "email@example.com" (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.
- 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.
- +229 (Benin, probably a prepaid mobile phone)
Fraud email example:
From: "Dr. Victor s. White" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply-To: "Dr. Victor s. White" <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 2014 20:52:10 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: RE:TRANSFER OF $5.2 MILLION ATM CARD
Â RE:TRANSFER OF $5.2 MILLION ATM CARD
I wish to keep you posted on the out come ofÂ our emergency meeting with the
World Bank president, Mr.Robert Zoellick,international monetary fund
(IMF),London ParisÂ club and (UN) I hereby inform you that your
winnings/inheritance payment file have been Signed and forwarded to Public
Plc (UBA) .Benin RepublicÂ where you will be receiving your fund via ATM
CARD which you
need to use by yourself from any ATM machine in your Country, and this
you only delivery fee.
An ATM card is a payment card provided by a financial institution to its
customers which enables the customer to use an automated teller machine for
transactions such as: deposits, cash withdrawals, obtaining account
and other types of banking transactions, often through interbank.
Therefore you are advisedÂ to contact Dr.SACHS ALLAN PAUL with the below
information for your immediate payment.
Below isÂ your paying officer from Public BankÂ Plc Benin Republic Accept
your ATM CARD
Public Bank UBA debit card.
Name:Dr. Victor s. White
Phone No: +229=9835=5176
After your response to his atm card officeÂ mailbox
will furnish more data to you on how you will receive your AUTOMATIC TELLER
MACHINE CARD (ATM CARD.I advise you to stop any further communication with
whosoever you are dealing with. For security reason and you advise to provide
the below info:
Full names: _______
Your address: _______
Copy of I.d Card: _______
MR. ROBERT V. DAWE,
World Bank International Auditor