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.
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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:
- "from the desk of" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "international remittance department" (Banks mentioned in 419 scams are always fake (real banks don't communicate using mobile phones or free webmail addresses))
- "email@example.com" (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.
Fraud email example:
From: JIM YONG KIM <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 14 Sep 2016 04:47:39 -0700
Subject: FROM THE DESK OF JIM YONG KIM WORLD BANK PRESIDENT SWITZERLAND
FROM THE DESK OF JIM YONG KIM
WORLD BANK PRESIDENT SWITZERLAND
AND FOREIGN / INTERNATIONAL
Bahnhofpl. 1, Baden, Switzerland,
Date: 9 / 14 / 2016
Based on the outcome of the recent meeting with,Special Delegates from US Department of Treasury and International Monetary Fund, the Government of Switzerland and world bank has accepted the responsibility of your delay payment and all the troubles this have caused you but very surprise that this issue was concluded on Friday 12 of september, 2016 and your name was pressed on our payment schedule notice board that you will receive your fund through Santander Bank Of Spain,
You are instantly qualified to receive and confirm your payment within the next 72hrs. as necessary clearance has been granted from the International Monetary Funds External Auditors to release the funds to you with immediate effect.And reconfirm your international payment voucher number and your reference identification number respectively before that office with a view to the final remittance approval and subsequent crediting of your bank account to the tune of funds as stated herein.
With that being done, you are required to urgently contact the Santander Bank Of Spain with this information name Mr José Antonio Álvarez Álvarez email: email@example.com so that they will transfer your fund to your account with out any delay.
We wish to inform you of the need for you to also re-confirm the following information before the through Santander Bank Of Spain to enable the officer in-charge to proceed with the preliminary arrangements that will enhance the immediate release of your fund to you and you are therefore advised to communicate only with the accredited officer for further remittance advice.
1) Full Name:
2) Full Address;
3) Your contact telephone and fax number;
4) Your Age and Profession;
5) Copy of any valid form of your Identification;
Thank you for giving us the opportunity to serve your banking needs.
JIM YONG KIM
WORLD BANK PRESIDENT
Bahnhofpl. 1, 5400