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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "from the desk of" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "my direct telephone number" (a "direct line" in a scam usually means an untraceable mobile phone number used by a scammer in an internet cafe, a redirection service number that forwards to a mobile or a free voicemailbox in a different country.)
- "nigeria national petroleum corporation" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- "lagos" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- "cheque " (Beware of any scheme that involves cashing checks or money orders and then wiring a portion of the funds somewhere - you'll be liable for the entire amount if the checks or money orders turn out to be fake, even after you have received and forwarded cash. If it's a lottery prize, remember that real lotteries do not pay large prizes by check. They wire the money directly to your bank account and you do not pay for that. Many scammers promise a large check only in order to then demand payment of courier fees for a fake courier service. )
- 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: "FROM DIAMOND BANK NIGERIA ATM CARD ELECTRONICS UNIT." (may be fake)
Date: Sat, 7 Feb 2015 21:28:50 -0800
Subject: YOUR DIAMOND BANK ATM ELECTRONIC MASTER/ VISA CARD IS READY FOR SHIPMENT TO YOU.
>From The Desk Of: Dr.Uzoma Dozie.
Managing Director/CEO Diamond Bank Nigeria Plc.
Diamond Bank Plc Address: Plot 1261, Adeola Hopewell Street,
Victoria Island, Lagos.Nigeria.
Fax: +234 1 2619728.
YOUR DIAMOND BANK ATM ELECTRONIC MASTER/ VISA CARD IS READY FOR SHIPMENT TO YOU.
Attn: ATM Card Funds Beneficiary.
Diamond Bank Nigeria Plc wish to officially inform you that based on the directives and instructions of our ordering customers the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporations (NNPC) that Diamond Bank Nigeria Plc has uploaded credited your approved sum of US$4.5Million (Four Million Five Hundred Thousand Dollars) through our Inter Switch Blue Chip Network into your Diamond Bank ATM Master Debit Master Card as instructed by our ordering customers the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporations (NNPC) as there Consolidated Oil Reserve Account Holders here in Nigeria,this is based on the directives and instructions of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank to the Nigerian Government to offset and release your due Lottery/Contract/Inheritance grants funds,your ATM Card Debt Master is now uploaded, Stamped,Signed ,Sealed and ready for shipment to your mailing address in your country which you must reconfirm to this bank with immediate effect,your ATM Card will be fully Activated for cash withdrawals once yo
Furtherance to the above this is your Diamond Bank ATM Card Registration Code Reference Numbers of DB-FXJKT00147G15 and this is your ATM Card Personal Identifications Numbers (PIN CODE) 0090 which you will use to make withdrawals from your ATM Card in any ATM Machine around the world,i forwarded all this details to you for you to know that your cash disposable ATM Card of the above amount is ready for your use and will only be Activated once you reconfirm your full names that we will insert in your card as the beneficiary as we only uploaded and credited your cash in the ATM Card through your Diamond Bank Auxiliary Personalized account numbers as thus: 1016633119 which is normal process and the procedure as the approved sum of US$4.5Million must be deposited in your account before the ATM Card will be issued,note that we have an instructions to only release your funds via ATM Master Card or via International Cashiers Cheque if you so wish to be paid and your only obligations is for you to send the shipment c
Finally i will inform you what the shipment fees is and how you will send it to our bank for your shipment once we hear from you,also do reconfirm the above requested details for your shipment and the instant electronics Activations of your ATM Card while your card is on transits to your address,note that outside the shipment fees you will not pay any other fees or charges until you receive your ATM Card and start using it as your cash has been fully loaded on it for withdrawals,call me on my direct telephone number as soon as you receive this email for your urgent shipment:234-8090-718221 and your address and full names and details for the Activations should be forwarded to this direct secure email only ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
Do obliged urgently as we are waiting to hear from you for your shipment as your package is ready now awaiting delivery.
Diamond Bank Nigeria Plc.