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:
- "mtcn" (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. )
- "processing 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. )
- "abuja" (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.
Fraud email example:
From: (sent from abused email account)
Date: Fri, 6 Jan 2017 07:30:59 +0800
Subject: WHY DO YOU CHOOSE TO LOSE YOUR $2.5MILLION FUND
Resident Representative Office for Nigeria
Senior Resident Representative.
9 Hon. Justice Mohammed Bello St.
Acct:Our Ref: FGN /SNT/STB
May the year be brighter than the one gone by; enveloped in goodness, well
being, bliss and wealth.Happy New Year 2017!
I have to inform you at this juncture that I do not enjoy your silent to my
mails, Phone calls, Text messages and ignoring my advice and jettisoning my
messages, to the trash is very painful and disheartening, more so, I continue
to plead with them again this year on your behalf to give you more time but
they have finally resolved to cancel this transfer if you fail to send the
processing fees as required, please do all you can to send the money so the
Africa Development Bank (ADB) please I do not wish this calamity to befall on
you after all we have done for this transfer. I am appealing to you, do all
you can to send the money immediately, so that the authority does all process
and release your fund, take it from me for once, my word is my bond, I am
assuring you that nothing again will be a hindrance to the effective release
of your funds once the account is process. Please let nothing of whatever
impediments stop you from getting your $2.5Million funds because it was paid,
that fund was legally and genuinely paid and that is the truth. I want you to
do all you can to send the money as the authority has grated you and do get
back to me immediately, do not keep silent as usual to this message because I
know what I am saying, so that we will know how to dialogue with the
management of the paying bank on the situation. I am waiting to hear from you now.
Receiver's name: LAWRENCE PETER
Address: Abuja, Nigeria
Text Question: When
Amount required: $285
Sender's full banking details to avoid wrong transfer:
NAME AND ADDRESS OF BANK:
As soon as the payment is received today, you will receive your $2.5M the
following day without any delay.Send your reply only :
THANKS GENE LEON
International Monetary Funds Unit.
Abuja Federal Rup of Nigeria.
Telephone: ( +234) 9071480204