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:
- "inheritance funds" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "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)
- ",000,000" (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)
- "abuja" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- 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.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Michael Baker" <email@example.com>
Date: Sat, 4 Jun 2016 18:11:57 +0100
Subject: LETTER OF COMPENSATION / SETTLEMENT.
ICPC NIGERIA (Anti-Fraud Unit) MOTTO: We Fight Against Fraud, Funds Delay a=
nd Impersonation. Head Office: Plot 802, Constitution AvenueZone A9 Central=
AreaP. MB 535, Garki Abuja. Tel: +234 814 843 7635 ***** SERVICE 24HRS ***=
** Dear Sir / Madam, LETTER OF COMPENSATION / SETTLEMENT. We hereby inform =
you que October of our records for the year investigation it is drawn to us=
que youhave Been victimized by the men of the underworld (Pretenders / imp=
ostors). However, the management hasbeen dutifully empowered by the Investi=
gation bureau office of the President andCommander-in-chief of the Armed Fo=
rces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to curb all illicittransaction and =
workload of this perpetrators. In line with the Anti-corruption crusade of =
the Presidency, President Goodluck Jonathan (GCFR) youare by this Email not=
ification to stop any contact Regarding this illegal transaction with thisH=
oodlums.Out of our findings, the image of this country Has Been dented Inte=
rnationally During thepast administration of the Federal Government of Nige=
ria.Presently, we have employed the strategy sanity toremit, and vow to ter=
minate the activity of this fraudsters, by Consolidating our securityNetwor=
k all over the country in view to monitor all outgoing and incoming communi=
cation enableus to fish out and avert all illegal and suspicious transactio=
n Both domestically and internationallyrespectively. Moreover, it Occur que=
some of our Financial Institutions (Bank) serves as a pipe condit by fraud=
sters use to whichthis perpetrate the undo crime.We have signal All These f=
inancial institutionsto scrutinized in Place investigation before carrying =
any bank found transaction.Any culpable ofbreaching the law, must have Thei=
r operational license revoke. In Accordance with the criminal and other rel=
ated offense act 25 of 1999 constitution, we havebeen officially compel by =
Senator. A. Aminu (JP), Chairman, Senate committee on Foreign Affair tomapp=
ed October billions of Dollars from the Annual Budget to compensate all def=
rauded Victims the partof the ongoing National Reform Scheme of the preside=
ncy and means to radiate forcriticism immunity. In view of this, we Have Be=
en informed That You are still dealing with Those hoodlums in all yourattem=
pts to secure the release of your fund.We wish to advise you que such an il=
legal act has tostop if you wish to receive your payment since we have Deci=
ded to bring a solution to yourproblem. Do be informed que we reserve the r=
ight at our discretion to sue you for damage onrecognition of further Top c=
ontact with this people. By the strength of this development the sum of US =
$ 20.Million United States Dollars (USD $ 20,000,000.00) Has Been SIGNED to=
each Beneficiaries to be paid. This Memorandum is to notifyyou That You Wi=
ll Be Settled with the sum of US $ 20.Million United States Dollars (US $ 2=
0,000,000.00) / your Inheritance / contract or lotto payment. Kindly send t=
he above information: 1. Your full name: 2. Your residential address: 3. Mo=
bile and fax number (for regular official contact). These above-mentioned i=
nformations will officially enable us to carry out of our verificationproce=
sses and after your que compensation sum / Inheritance Funds will be approv=
ed in your name andElectronically wired into your designated Bank account o=
r by ATM Card delivery to your doorstep., depending on Which mode of paymen=
t you prefer. You are to contact this office upon receipt of this notificat=
ion immediately to proceed for payment. Vision: To fight corruption to the =
standstill and restore Nigeria to the enviable standard of respectabilityan=
d dignity of the nations. Please do Respond back to us with this email. ( m=
firstname.lastname@example.org) Best Regard, Hon. Michael BakerChairman ICPC =
Nigeria. (Independent Corrupt Practice Commission, ICPC) managerPowered by =
Information Communication Technology Dept., (C) 2016 ICPC Nigeria, register=