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 fake company names, fake addresses, non-existent institutions/documents or other details have appeared in scams before:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "the consignment" (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)
- "trunk box" (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)
- "consignment " (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)
- "trunk boxes" (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 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)
- "diplomatic delivery" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- "firstname.lastname@example.org" (this email address has been used in a known scam)
- 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: "Chairman: Int'L Payment Committee." (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 7 Aug 2016 05:16:50 -0600
Subject: ~Diplomatic Immunity!!!Please Call Mr.Joe Weaver On +1 (202) 660-1161
Payment of Inheritance fund, overdue payments and compensations
without causing heart break to beneficiaries is my priority. Is my
pleasure to inform you that your deliveryman has arrived with your
cash trunk boxes value $8.3 million dollars being your inheritance
/compensation payment. He is currently in JFK International Airport,
New York City.
I want you to know that you have 24 hours to call him now with this
line (202) 660-1161 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org , then
speak with the diplomatic deliveryman for directives, his name is Mr.
Joe Weaver. As he has been waiting to hear from you to enable him get
to your home address without missing his way.
For your information, the deliveryman with your package is not aware
of the content of the boxes for security purpose. Please do not tell
him to avoid running away with your funds. On no account should you
let him know about the content of the consignment for security
reasons. Most importantly you are advised to send your full data to
him, which include your Full Name, Current Residential Address, Direct
Cell Number, and A copy of any identity card to verify that you are
the right receiver to avoid mistakes. Also reconfirm your full current
address and valid phone number to the Delivery officer via his above
email address once you receive this email to enable him deliver your
cash consignment boxes to your house without any further delay.
You are advised not to waste his time at the airport, so that he would
not be stranded in any way because he will return if he finds out that
you are not doing anything to get him over to your house.
Rev. John David
Chairman: Int'L Payment Committee.