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:
- "diplomatic delivery" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- "(ecowas)" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Financier; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
- bank details contact them and get back to us: e-mail: (email@example.com) phone number: 233-281750 or mobil number: + (Financier; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "BANKING BOARD" (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 18 Sep 2016 08:30:43 +0530
Subject: You are welcome:
May the divine blessings of this season protect and guide you. This is to informed that you are qualified to
receive your funds through the following process after thorough investigation that you have been scammed
a lot of money, the (ECOWAS) Economic Community of West African Debt Recovery Monetary Supervision
Board has authorized the standard chartered bank of Ghana to remit your funds to you through the following
process which you have an option to choose one:
(1) Online Banking Transfer
(2) Diplomatic Money Transfer
(3) Automated Teller Machine (ATM) Card
(4)Telegraphic Wire Transfer
You have successfully passed a mandate to the current standard chartered Bank of Ghana to boost the
exercise of clearing all foreign debts owed to you and other individuals and organizations who have been
found not to have receive their, Consignment, Contract Sum, Lottery/Gambling, Inheritance and the likes.
Now your payment will be sent to you by the following process online banking transfer diplomatic delivery
system, finally, ATM Card that will be coming alongside a custom pin which you will use to withdraw,
could you please send a copy of your identification together with your direct phone number?
Here is the standard chartered bank details contact them and get back to us:
E-mail: (firstname.lastname@example.org) Phone Number: 233-281750 or Mobil Number:
+ 233-555-506-658 Contact Person: Lawrence Offor.
(ECOWAS) Banking Supervisor Monetary Board Dr.Kwekwu Addo
Find the copy of the attached funds approval.