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:
- ",500,000" (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)
- "00,000.00" (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)
- "certified bank draft" (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 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: "Kevin Biondi" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 18 Apr 2016 14:55:43 -0700
I am Mr. Kevin Biondi, I am a US citizen, 69 years Old. I reside here in T=
exas. My residential address is as follows. 251 Southern avenue. Apt 203, D=
allas Texas, United States, I am one of those that took part in the Compens=
ation in UK many years ago and they refused to pay me, I had paid over $65,=
000 while in the US, trying to get my payment all to no avail, I had been a=
victim of scam for 9 years.
So I decided to travel down to UK with all my compensation documents, And =
I was directed to meet One Director Mr. Daniel Gary Of the Rooly Security A=
gency who is the member of COMPENSATION AWARD COMMITTEE, and I contacted hi=
m and he explained everything to me. He said whoever is contacting us throu=
gh emails are fraudsters
He took me to the paying bank for the claim of my Compensation payment. Ri=
ght now I am the most happiest man on earth because I have received my comp=
ensation funds of $2,500,000.00 (Two million five hundred thousand dollars)=
Moreover, Mr. Daniel Gary showed me the full information of those that are=
yet to receive their payments and I saw your name and email address as one=
of the beneficiaries, that is why I decided to email you. I will advise yo=
u to contact Mr. Steve Cook. =
Mean while, few days after my payment, I was briefed that those of us that=
has been scammed and those that are yet to be contacted will be able to co=
ntact the regional office of the Compensation Award Committee in Dahlgren, =
Please contact Mr. Steve Cook, below are his contact info.
E-mail Address: email@example.com
Tel. Number: 540-413-9059
The only money I paid after I met Sir Daniel Gary was just $300.00 usd for=
the paper works, take note of that.
(NOTE: TELLING YOU TO PAY FOR ANY DELIVERY OR COURIER CHARGE, THAT IS ALL =
NOTHING BUT LIES, I REPEAT THE ONLY MONEY YOU WILL HAVE TO PAY AND WHICH I =
ALSO PAID IS $300.00 FOR THE ADMINISTRATIVE/ ENDORSEMENT CHARGE AS IMPOSED =
BY THE GOVERNMENT AND YOUR PACKAGE CONTAINING YOUR CERTIFIED BANK DRAFT CHE=
CK WILL BE REACHING YOU THROUGH THE ROOLEY SECURITY DELIVERING AGENT. )
Once again stop contacting those people, I will advise you to contact Mr. =
Steve Cook so that he can help you to Deliver your fund.
Mr. K. Biondi.