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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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.
- 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.
- This email lists free webmail addresses. Use of such addresses is typical for scams. Lotteries, banks and any but the smallest of companies do not normally use such addresses. Criminals use them to anonymously send and receive email at Internet cafes.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "United Nations" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 19 Dec 2014 02:40:37 +0900 (KST)
NEW YORK OFFICE
United Nations Foundation
801 Second Ave
New York, NY 10017
UNITED NATIONS COMPENSATION AWARD 2014 APPROVED YOUR PAYMENT
I would like to let it be known that in a meeting held by the United Nations in Affiliation with the World Bank Organization and the U.S States Government, it has been agreed that a compensation of US$2.5Million has been approved in your name. This Compensation program was organized to compensate all the people who have in time past had unfinished transaction and those that has been scammed in any part of the world.This compensation scheme was set up under the United Nations Project for unsettled debts and scam victims rehabilitation scheme. Your E-mail Address was drawn automatically via web directory through an E-mail ballot machine, that is why this mail was sent to you and you are qualified to receive the above mentioned compensation payment. An ATM Visa Card No: 4303 4579 3398 1098 has been allocated to you which will be credited with your payment of US$2.5Million which will be delivered to you in person at your place of residence. You are hereby advised to
Contact Person : Mr.Frank Martins
You are also instructed to forward the following information below to the above contact person for complete processing and delivery of your ATM Visa Card to you.
1. Your Full Name :
2. Your Home/Mobile Telephone No:
3. Your Home or Office Address :
4. Age/Occupation/Marital Status:
5. Scanned copy of your identification:
You are advised to contact the Zenith at the address above, and have your information listed above forwarded to them with 72 hrs you receive this message to avoid cancellation of your payment. Thanks for your patience, and do contact us in the near future when you have successfully received your payment.
Ms. Valerie Amos.
United Nations Under Secretary for Humanitarian Affairs,
Emergency Relief Coordinator