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:
- "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)
- "is highly confidential" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- "top secret" (scammers urge victims to keep the transaction secret because they don't want anyone to point out to them that it is a scam)
- "diplomatic security company" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "Dr William" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 14 Sep 2016 11:14:43 +0300
Subject: REPLY NOW
STATUTORY ANOMALIES ON YOU RECEIVING YOUR APPROVED
FUND AS AND
FROM: DELIVERY AGENT
Dr William Mike
Firstly, I wish to introduce myself as a sympathizer of your situation. I
am the Comptroller of Fund Movement Terminal and Director of national
warehouse where abandoned fund/valuables consignments are dumped.
This is to inform you that fresh arrangement was made by me to conclude
the shipment of your consignment of funds to your country. I choose to do
it and make sure it has left the shores of Nigeria already before
contacting you. I found out that this consignment has been lying here
because of lack of contact and none payment of delivery cost This is why I
decided to use my connections as the Delivery/Shipment officer in charge
of the National Security warehouse. (This is where all the abandoned
consignments in Nigeria are kept at the orders of the Government of
Nigeria for seizure or destruction.
Therefore, this letter is highly confidential and top secret. For this
reason,you must not inform anybody about this letter or my contact with
you. You must keep my relationship with you to be topped secret and highly
confidential because as I have arranged your consignment to the Diplomatic
Security Company in Nigeria where the delivery will come from to your
house, so no one must know so that the fund will not raise an eye brow.
CONDITIONS OF THIS DELIVERY
1. You must keep my relationship with you highly secret/confidential.
2. You must not expose all the above information to anybody.
3. You must be willing to act fast on any information, directives and
advice from me and the Diplomatic Security Company in Nigeria.
Note: I know the content of the Box because I could see the amount you are
being owned by the Federal Government of Nigeria as an inheritance. This
is why I decided to get involved. You must also know that this arrangement
do not concern all the people that you have had contact with in Nigeria
before today as this consignment/Payment has been surrendered to the
Government, Hence my involvement.
As soon as I receive your response, I will give you more details on the
way of such arrangements and I will also give you the full contact
information of the Diplomatic Security Company in Nigeria as soon as you
have contacted me.
Therefore, further details will be furnished to you as soon
as I receive your reply.
Dr William Mike
Director Of National Warehouse