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 united state 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)
- "hundred thousand 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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- "economic financial crime commission" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "ZENITH BANK OF NIGERIA" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 14 Jul 2016 01:41:42 -0700
Subject: Good news congratulation sir,
This is to officially inform you that we have verified your payment file which worth about Seven Hundred Thousand United States Dollars (US$700.000) only We also found
out that you have not receive any payment since the British Government has set aside Eight Hundred Million United State Dollars (US$800,000,000.00) only from the One
Billion Dollars collected from fraudsters with the help of the Economic Financial Crime Commissions both in London and Nigeria and other parts of the world These
include cash and frozen assess to compensate those who have been attempted or victims of fraud by some imposters/fraudsters in Nigeria,
London and other part of the country Hence we have decided to bring a solution to your problem by arranging your payment through an accredited bank here in Nigeria
(Zenith Bank Of Nigeria) This is the latest instruction by Muhammadu Buhari(GCFR)president Federal Republic of Nigeria and British Prime Minister in conjunction with US government Please confirm if you will like to receive the fund (US$700.000) by sending us the below information and how you wish to receive your fund.
(A) payment via ATM value card
(B) Payment via Wire bank to bank transfer
1. Your Full Name and Address
2. Direct Phone/Fax number
3. Your Age and Nationality
6. Company name
For your information you have to stop any further communication with any other person(s) or office(s) in respect of transferring your fund this is to avoid any hitches
in finalizing your payment. Note that because of impostors, we hereby issued you our code of conduct which is (445) do not disclose this code to any office or any one
Mr. Joe C Martins, Director Foreign Operations