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:
- "western union" (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- "cotonou" (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.
- Western Union money transfer is completely untraceable and therefore is *not* safe to use with anyone you do not know personally. It is the preferred method of online criminals to collect money from their victims.
- 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: western union <email@example.com>
Reply-To: western union <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 8 Dec 2014 15:20:06 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Your Western Union Payment Special BONUS
Â Attn: Dear Customer.
This is to notify you about the latest development concerning all the payment that are left in our custody,which your $950,000.00 are
inclusive Besides, your where given a bill of $583,in order to receive your first payment $5000 twice pay day of which we didn't hear from
you for sometime now......
Hence, our Western UnionÂ is now offering a Special BONUS to help all our customers that are having their paymentÂ in our custody due to of
prices. In order words we are now requesting that those involve should pay only the sum of $62. 00 to receive all their payment abandoned in
Besides, my dear, this is the opportunity for you and have to comply and your fundsÂ shall be transfer to your desginated address
immediatley so you are advice to reconfirm your receiver details as
Direct Country and City.....
Your Passport or ID.......
But remember that after (3 DAYS) you did not make the payment then we will divert your funds to Goverment Fund, to aviod problem or we will
cancel the payment for this year untill next year only God know what will happen before then.
Again after (THREE DAYS ) We will enter A new projectÂ for the Consigning next year and that is the reason why we decided to help to
all our customers before we enter into the new project.
So beÂ advise to send only $62.00 immediately so that we will register your payment for you to start receive $5,000 as from tomorrow. Be
advise that there is no time again for we to call any person on phone unless you will call +229-93-49-99-90
After the payment of $62.00 you will start receiveing your money every day$5,000 through Western Union Send the money through Western Union Money Transfer with the information below,
Reciver name....... ARINZE UZOHA
Country==Â Â Â Benin Republic.
The moment i receive the payment of $62 i will release the first payment informations of $5,000 to you and you will pickÂ up the money
and i will send you another money. Hoping to hear from you.
Mr. George Bal
FORIGN OPERATION MANAGER
WESTERN UNION OFFICE BENIN