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:
- "million pounds" (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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: PASTOR OSINBAJO <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 9 Jun 2016 04:06:58 -0700
Subject: GET BACK TO ME, BENEFICIARY AND CONTRACTORS. OSINBAJO THE VICE
PRESIDENT OF NIGERIA
DEAR CONTRACTOR, I AM VERY GLAD TO WRITE YOU THIS EMAIL. MY NAME IS
PASTOR OSINBANJO THE VICE PRESIDENT OF NIGERIA. I WAS ELECTED AS THE
VICE PRESIDENT IN 2015. MY PURPOSE OF WRITING THIS TO YOU, AFTER THE
MEETING OF THE PRESIDENT AND SAUDI ARABIA, WE CHOSE TO FIGHT
CORRUPTION IN NIGERIA IN THE PAS ONE YEAR.
I AM CONTACTING TO FOR CONFIDENTIAL TRANSACTION. THE PRESIDENT CALLED
ME THAT HE HAS EAR PROBLEM. I RUSHED TO HIS APARTMENT IN ASO ROCK AND
NOTICED IT WAS TRUE AND TOLD ME TO KEEP IT CLOSE. AS OF SATURDAY IT
WAS SERIOUS. OUR GODFATHER OBASANJO IN NIGERIA CALLED AND ASKED AND I
TOLD HIM THE TRUTH.
HE LEFT NIGERIA FOR TREATMENT BUT THE DOCTOR THAT IS TREATING HIM IN
NIGERIA, SAID ITS CAN NOT BE CURED. I AM CONTACTING YOU TO ASSIST ME
CAUSE THERE IS 9.5 MILLION POUNDS DEPOSITED ON BEHALF OF CONTRACTORS.
RIGHT AWAY, THE SENATORS HAS A MEETING AND THEY SAID I AM GOING TO
OUR SANATE PRESIDENT BUKOLA SARAKI WANTS TO DRAG WITH ME. OUR
GODFATHER OBASANJO TOLD ME SECRETLY TO MAKE A PROVISION CAUSE THERE
WILL BE ELECTION. IF YOU DONT HAVE VOTES YOU CANT WIN.
MY PURPOSE OF CONTACTING YOU IS TO COME IN AS A BENEFICIARY WHERE THIS
MONEY WAS DEPOSITED IN DIAMOND BANK AND CLAIM THIS MONEY ON BEHALF OF
ME CAUSE THAT IS THE ONLY MONEY I WILL USE TO CONTEST WITH THE SENATE
THIS IS CONFIDENTIAL SIR. THE MONEY IS 9.5 MILLION POUNDS AND THE
WOMAN IN CHARGE IS MRS HOPE EMEYA. SHE KNOWS ABOUT THIS. I WILL GIVE
YOU ARE CONTACT AS SOON AS YOU RESPOND TO ME.
IF YOU ARE NOT INTRESTED DONT CONTACT ME. WE ARE BOTH BENEFITING FROM
THIS. WHEN I BECOME THE PRESIDENT OF THE COUNTRY I WILL MAKE YOU AN
I NEED YOUR INFORMATIONS AS LISTED.
YOUR FULL NAMES
PASSPORT/ DIVERS LICENSE.
YOU CAN REACH ME WITH THIS NUMBER MY SECRETARY WILL TALK TO YOU.
FEDERAL REP. OF NIGERIA.