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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "the consignment" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "consignment " (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "million dollars" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "diplomatic agent" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- "contact the diplomat" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- "barrister" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "high court" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
- 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)
- without any problem: name: agent paul uba email: firstname.lastname@example.org cell phone: 928-554-2514 furthermore remember the agent (Gmail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: Stephen Williams <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 10 Feb 2015 21:22:20 -0300
Subject: Attention My Dear Friend,
Attention My Dear Friend,
I have finally succeeded in getting your consignment box worthy of
$20million dollars out of delivery security room, with the
help of Barrister Frank Jimmy SENIOR ADVOCATE OF BENIN (SAB) Federal
Supreme High Court of Benin which act as your foreign
Attorney representative here in Benin so he convince the authority in
your country that your consignment box has no link with
terrorist or drug trafficking.
Finally the authority at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International
Airport 6000 North Terminal Parkway, Atlanta, Georgia
of United States has agree to allow the diplomatic agent Paul Uba to
leave the airport with your consignment box worth
$20million dollars in cash, the authority has agreed that Paul will be
leaving the airport as soon as he present the
Insurance Coverage Certificate of your consignment which will be
obtain from Benin republic. However, I will advise you to
reconfirm your delivery information to the agent Paul Uba to avoid
Your Full Name:
A Copy of Your ID for Identification attached
Nearest Airport: as he is at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta, Georgia right
now because of the Searching and Scanning of the
package which made him to misplace your Information.
Contact the diplomatic agent in person with the below information as
his waiting to communicate with you call him on his cell
phone 928-554-2514 enable you give him full direction location without
Name: Agent Paul Uba
Cell Phone: 928-554-2514
Furthermore remember the Agent Paul Uba whom will deliver the package
does not know the content of that consignment box is
money because the Attorney which represented you registered it as a
family value to avoid hitch during the delivery so
unknown circumstances should you let him know the content of that
consignment box is $20million dollars to avoid lost of your
fund as your Consignment was Sign and Stamp by Federal Ministry of
Justice to make sure that it is protected until it gets to
you as no authority is allow to open the consignment box expect you.
Also call me as soon as you receive this massage to
discuss on issue of the needed Insurance Coverage Certificate of your
consignment which require some little fee contact me
with the below information so we can discuss on how to obtain the
needed Insurance Coverage Certificate immediately on your
Telephone: +229-6139-2943 or +229-6867-2419
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