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 phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "inheritance funds" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Ms.Nancy Owen" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Sat, 29 Apr 2017 12:40:48 +0100
TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN
WORLD DEBT RECONCILIATION COMMITTEE
YOUR OVERDUE INHERITANCE FUNDS IN THE AMOUNT OF USD$3.5M
We are pleased to inform you that we are World Debt Reconciliation
Committee newly set up by The International Banks and the United Nations
for Reconciliation and Development (WORLD BANK) And the International
Monetary Fund (IMF). Based on series of complaints received from
International Bodies such as Cooperate Bodies and Non Governmental
Organization (NGO) on the inability of some Government of different
countries in the World, Commercial banks and World Lottery Organization to
settle their clients Contract debts, Inheritance Fund and Winning prize
fund.Your name was discovered as next on the list of the outstanding files
that are mandated to receive their payment without delay. We wish to
inform you that your payment inheritance funds has been gazetted to be
released to you as soon as you respond to this notification.Meanwhile, a
woman contacted our office few days ago with a letter, claiming to be your
true representative. Here are her informationâs
Name Janet Moran
Bank Name: Citi Bank
Bank Address: 315 E Primrose L n, Lady Lake, Florida, USA.
Account number: 650380942883.
Please, do reconfirm to this office, as a matter of urgency if this woman
is from you so that this committee will not be held responsible for paying
into the wrong account name.for the commencement of your payment,the below
information's are required without delay.
1. Name in full:
5. Marital Status:
6. Your Occupation:
7. Company Name & Position:
Further directives on how your fund will be remitted to you will be given.
Kindly get back to us as soon as possible.NOTE: BECAUSE OF IMPOSTORS, WE
HEREBY ISSUE YOU OUR PASSCODE, WHICH IS (WDRC/7123) SO YOU HAVE TO QUOTE
THIS CODE WHEN CONTACTING THE REGIONAL PAYMENT DIRECTOR MR DONALD MOODLLEY
THROUGH Email:email@example.com.BY USING IT AS YOUR SUBJECT.
Ms Nancy Owen
FOR THE MANAGEME