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:
- "account opening" (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. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "DR.PETER IKEY" (may be fake)
Date: Mon, 18 Jan 2016 19:09:00 +0100
Subject: Hello Dear
How are you it has been a long time,actually i have sent you several emails without receiving your responds. However,as i have not seen your email for a long time now,i have decided to open an online account with intercontinental bank and deposited your fund of US$15.2Million,hoping you will reply my email so that i can send you the account details to enable you to check the money online.I only have your account number but bank did not release your account log in pin for security reasons,The bank will send you login pin direct.
To save you all the problem,I will send you the bank details and your account number once you reply me back so that you can login from the bank website to see your fund,and to receive the fund from the bank.I have paid the account online opening charge.so you will not pay for the account opening charge again.Email back so that i will send you the details soon.
Thanks I am waiting to hear good news from you today.
Peter Ikey Obi