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:
- "required fee " (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "money gram" (this will cost you money - be careful with upfront payments to anyone you only know through email, especially if they promise you a lot of money. NEVER send money by Western Union or MoneyGram to people you do not know personally - NO EXCEPTIONS! Instant wire transfer services are not meant to be used with strangers because they offer no protection against fraud. That is precisely why the criminals want you send money that way. )
- "waiting for your urgent response" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- "very 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)
- "cotonou" (a location commonly mentioned 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.
Fraud email example:
From: " firstname.lastname@example.org" <"www."@road.ocn.ne.jp>
Reply-To: " email@example.com" <"firstname.lastname@example.org"@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 15 Dec 2016 04:59:16 +0900 (JST)
Subject: ATTENTION, GOOD MORNING
MONEY GRAM INTERANATIONAL COTONOU BENIN REPUBLIC/
ADDRESS 455 AGBOKOU,ANKPA ROAD LAGOTES PALAR.
ATTENTION, GOOD MORNING
WE WISH TO ACKNOWLEDGE THE RECEIPT OF YOUR EMAIL IN THIS MONEY GRAM OFFICE AND THE CONTENT WAS WELL NOTED. WE ARE INSTRUCTED TO SEND YOUR FUND TO YOUR ADDRESS IN YOUR CITY MONEY GRAM OFFICE FROM HERE IN BENIN REPUBLIC OFFICE OF MONEY GRAM DEPARTMENT AND YOU WILL BE RECEIVING YOUR FUND ( $6,000.00 U.S.D ) PER DAY UNTIL YOU RECEIVE ALL YOUR TOTAL PAYMENT WHICH IS THE SUM OF $2.5MILLION AS SCHEDULED IN OUR OFFICE HERE.
THEREFORE, BE INFORMED THAT THROUGH THIS OUR MEDIUM OF MONEY GRAM PAYMENT YOU ARE ENTITLED TO BE RECEIVING US$6,000.00 EVERY DAY UNTIL YOUR TOTAL FUND WHICH IS $2.5MILLION USD IS COMPLETELY PAID TO YOU, BUT BEFORE THAT YOU WILL HAVE TO SEND THE REQUIRED FEE OF $150 U.S.D WHICH WILL BE USED FOR THE RENEWING AND RECONFIRMATION OF YOUR PAYMENT FILE TO ENABLE US START RELEASING YOUR PAYMENT AS SCHEDULED.
SECONDLY WE WISH TO INFORM YOU THAT WE HAVE ALREADY MADE THE FIRST PAYMENT BUT YOU CAN NOT PICK THE PAYMENT WHICH WE MADE ON YOUR NAME BECAUSE THE ADMINISTRATOR TRUST FUND HAVE NOT ACTIVATE THE PAYMENT DUE TO THE REQUIRED CHARGES WHICH IS AMOUNT OF $150 U.S.D FOR THE RE-NEWING ACTIVATION AND RECONFIRMATION FEE OF THE TOTAL PAYMENT AS NOT YET BEEN PAID THEREFORE YOU WERE ADVICED TO GO AHEAD AND SEND THE REQUIRED FEE AMOUNT OF $150 U.S.D TO ENABLE THEM ACTIVATE THE PAYMENT SO THAT YOU WILL START RECEIVING YOUR PAYMENT IMMEDIATELY.
HERE IS YOUR FIRST PAYMENT US$6000.00 THAT WE HAVE BEEN ISSUED OUT FOR YOU BUT IT HAS NOT ACTIVATED UNTIL YOU SETTLED THE REQUIRED FEE $150 U.S.D FOR US TO RE-NEWING ACTIVATION AND RE-CONFIRMATION OF YOUR PAYMENT FILE AS WELL BEFORE YOU CAN BE ABLE TO PICK IT UP OVER THERE YOUR CITY LOCATION MONEY GRAM OFFICE.
NAME OF SENDER'S:====MARJA WUNDERLICH.
REFERENCE NO: ==== ==== ==== =48854021
MONEY GRAM OFFICE COTONOU BENIN REPUBLIC/
ADDRESS 455 AGBOKOU,ANKPA ROAD LAGOTES PALAR.
NOTE: THE REASON WHY WE NEED YOU TO SEND US THE $150.00 USD IS THAT WE TRIED TO DEDUCT THE TRANSFERRING FEE OUT FROM YOUR FUND BUT THE MINISTER ADMINISTRATOR TRUST FUND OF BENIN REPUBLIC TOLD US THAT NO ONE HAS ACCESS OVER YOUR FUND AS IT HAVE BEEN SIGNED AND STAMPED THAT NO MONEY SHOULD BE DEDUCTED UNTIL IT GETS TO YOU TO AVOID ANY MISUNDERSTANDING BECAUSE IF ANY ONE HAS ACCESS TO THAT IT WILL INVOLVE YOU LOOSING YOUR FUND.
THEREFORE, YOU ARE EXPECTED TO SEND THE REQUIRED FEE SO THAT YOUR PAYMENT WILL BE RELEASED TO YOUR CITY MONEY GRAM OFFICE IMMEDIATELY AND NOTE THAT ONCE WE CONFIRM THE FEE, YOU ARE GOING TO CONFIRMED YOUR FIRST PAYMENT $6,000.00 USD IMMEDIATELY OVER THERE WITHOUT ANY FURTHER DELAY AND YOUR OTHER PAYMENTS WILL FOLLOW AS WELL.
BELOW IS OUR ACCOUNTANT'S INFORMATION FOR YOU TO SEND THE $150 U.S.D THROUGH OUR MONEY GRAM OFFICE:
RECEIVER NAME:.........Larry LUIS
COUNTRY:............... BENIN REPUBLIC.
TEXT QUESTION:..........IN GOD ?
WE ARE WAITING FOR YOUR URGENT RESPONSE TO ENABLE THIS OFFICE KNOW YOUR ARRANGEMENT FOR THE PAYMENT AND WE WILL ALSO ADVICE YOU TO KEEP YOUR TRANSACTION WITH US VERY CONFIDENTIAL SO THAT NOBODY WILL PICK YOUR FUND BECAUSE WE WILL NOT BE HOLD RESPONSIBLE IF ANYBODY PICK UP YOUR FUND FROM YOUR END.
THANKS FOR YOUR UNDERSTANDING AS WE ARE WAITING FOR YOUR URGENT RESPONSE SOON.
MR STAN PEGE
CELL PHONE: +229-992-30-998
FORIGN OPERATION MANAGER
MONEY GRAM INTERNATIONAL
PAYMENT OFFICE BENIN REPUBLICa