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:
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- "central bank of nigeria" (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.
Fraud email example:
From: Ben Ezechi <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 20 Feb 2017 12:18:36 -0800
Subject: Re: Your new Payment Reference No.32477781
I write to confirm if you have received your payment of $10.500.000.00 only but I know that the answer is capital NO because your Fund is here with the Lloyds Banking Group, 25 Gresham Street London EC2V 7HN. which I am totally in-charge as the Senate committee on finance appointed to oversee your payment with the Lloyds Bank.
Your non-responding to matter that relate to your funds processing promptly is the major delay in concluding of your payment release, as a matter of urgency is important you get back to us to avoid suspension of your payment.
We are surprise over your approach at this stage of your funds release, it will not be to your best interest if your payment is been suspended or cancelled out rightly till further notice, hence we urge you to expedite action on this issue the most painful part is your inability to keep us with update on your progress towards resolving the matter you hardly response to mail.
Your transfer is made to be concluded not latter 22nd day of February, 2017, your failure to get back to will amount to immediate cancellation of your transfer already processed for payment release.
You are advice to make payment of $480.99 being for intra bank service charges which I can not deduct unless by a written application to the origin /source of funds.
Your new Payment Reference No.32477781, Allocation No: 9887664 Password No: 77658332, Pin Code No: 77673 and your Certificate of Merit Payment No: 103, Released Code No: 0746; Immediate Telex confirmation No:-222411634; Secret Code No: XZTW04473. Having received these vital payment information numbers, therefore you are now qualified to receive
your funds within 24hrs.
I am in London to clarify some issues with Lloyds Bank, in respect of your payment.
We await your immediate response.
Foreign Reserve Escrow Account Officer
Central Bank of Nigeria