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:
- "trunk box" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "consignment " (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "diplomatic courier" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- "courier company" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "JAMES MICHAEL" (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 8 Mar 2017 16:51:08 -0700
Subject: YOUR CONSIGNMENT IS READY FOR DELIVERY... GET BACK NOW FOR UPDATE
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND (IMF)
DEPT: WORLD DEBT RECONCILIATION AGENCIES.
ADVISE: YOUR OUTSTANDING PAYMENT NOTIFICATION
This is to inform you that I have deposited your Consignment Trunk Box of US$3,800,000 being your compensation payment due to your inability to claim your already approved INHERITANCE payment.
Your fund has been packaged in a consignment BOX and deposited with Diplomatic Courier Company which will be delivered to your address, so please re-confirmed
your personal information to them as required below:
1. Your full name:
2. Address where you will like it to be delivered:
4. Your age:
5. Attach/scanned copy of any identification:
7.Your Nearest Airport:
8 Your Country:
Use the below contact details to contact DIRECTOR IN CHARGE OF YOUR DELIVERY and you are to contact him with your name,address,telephone number,occupation,country and nearest airport for immediate delivery to you at your door step.
Office of the IMF London,