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:
- "into your nominated bank account" (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 united states 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)
- "barr." (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.
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Rev Dr Johnson Patrick" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 4 Oct 2016 01:17:59 +0100
Subject: YOUR REPLY IS HIGHLY NEEDED
TELEGRAPHIC TRANSFER NOTICE.
WE ARE HEREBY OFFICIALLY NOTIFY YOU CONCERNING YOUR FUND TELEGRAPHIC TRANSFER THROUGH OUR BANK, BANK OF AMERICA, NEW YORK, TO YOUR BANK ACCOUNT, WHICH HAS BEEN OFFICIALLY APPROVED BY THE MANAGEMENT OF WORLD BANK SWISS (WBS) TO CREDIT THE SUM OF US$2.8MILLION UNITED STATES DOLLARS INTO YOUR NOMINATED BANK ACCOUNT. NOTE THAT I HAVE STARTED PROCESSING YOUR PAYMENT AND EVERYTHING CONCERNING THE IMMEDIATE REMITTANCE OF YOUR FUNDS WILL BE CARRIED OUT WITHIN THE SHORTEST POSSIBLE TIME FROM THE TIME WE RECEIVED YOUR BELOW INFORMATION. ALSO BE INFORMED THAT THE GOVERNOR OF BANK IN LONDON (BL) WILL SIGN ON YOUR PAYMENT ADVICE AND A COPY OF THE ADVICE WILL BE SENT TO THE WORLD BANK IN SWISS FOR SOME RECORD PURPOSES. MEANWHILE YOUR INFORMATION AND YOUR FULL CONTACT DETAILS WERE RECEIVED FROM OUR RESEARCH MANAGER, BARR. PAUL PETERSON ON YOUR BEHALF TO FRB FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE OF YOUR FUND.
NOTE THAT THIS FUND WAS PART OF THE LODGED LATE PRESIDENT SADDAM HUSSEIN OF IRAQ DISCOVERY FUND WITH WORLD BANK OF SWITZERLAND, WHICH THE SWISS BANK HAS DECIDED TO DISTRIBUTE IT GENEROUSLY TO HELP FEW LUCKY INDIVIDUALS AND THE AMERICAN GOVERNMENT AND ALSO WITH THE NEW FRANCE PRESIDENT IS IN AGREEMENT WITH THE SWISS BANK TO DISTRIBUTE THE FUND TO SEVEN HUNDRED THOUSAND PEOPLE IN AMERICA, EUROPE & ASIA IN OTHER TO HELP IMPROVE THEIR BUSINESSES. THEREFORE, RECONFIRM THE BELOW INFORMATION ACCURATELY, BECAUSE THIS OFFICE CANNOT AFFORD TO BE HELD LIABLE FOR ANY WRONG TRANSFER OF FUNDS OR LIABLE OF ANY FUND CREDITED INTO AN UNKNOWN ACCOUNT. THESE ARE THE INFORMATION WE NEEDED TO BE RECONFIRMED BY YOU.
1. YOUR FULL BANK ACCOUNT DETAILS:
2. YOUR DIRECT CELL OR OFFICE PHONE TO REACH YOU:
3. YOUR ADDRESS OF LOCATIONS:
4. YOUR FULL NAME:
FINALLY, YOU ARE REQUIRED TO RECONFIRM DIRECTLY TO ME THE ABOVE INFORMATION TO ENABLE ME USE IT TO PROCESS YOUR BILL OF PAYMENT. YOUR QUICK RESPONSE SHALL BE MOSTLY APPRECIATED; ALL YOUR RESPONSE SHOULD BE DIRECTED THROUGH OUR ALTERNATIVE EMAIL ADDRESS FOR THE IMMEDIATE ATTENTION OF THE CREDIT CONTROL DEPARTMENT.ALTERNATIVE EMAIL/(email@example.com)
YOURS IN SERVICE,
Rev Johnson Patrick
DIRECTOR CREDIT/TELEX DEPT
BANK OF AMERICA, N.Y USA
Regards,BANK OF AMERICA