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:
- "dear friend" (a common phrase found in 419 scams)
- "million united state dollars" (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)
- "united state dollar" (this email uses bad English)
- This email message is a "New Partner from Paraguay" scam.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
- 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.
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Hon.Barrister Marcel" <email@example.com>
Date: Sun, 30 Apr 2017 23:11:20 -0700
Subject: YOUR COMPENSATION OF ($3,000.000.00)
Compliments of the day with your entire family,I'm happy to inform you
about my success in getting the fund transferred under the co-operation of
a new partner from London Presently i am in London for investment projects
with my own share of the total sum.Meanwhile,I didn't forget your past
efforts and attempts to assist me in transferring those funds despite that
it failed us some how.
Now contact my secretary,his name is Blessing Orlando, through his Email
Address ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) Phone Number +2348161113834 ask him
to send you the total sum of ($3,000.000.00) which I kept for your
compensation for all the past efforts in attempts to assist me in this
matter.I appreciated your efforts at that time very much,so feel free and
get in touched with my secretary Blessing Orlando and instruct him where to
send the amount to you.
Please do let me know immediately when you receive it so that we can share
the joy after all the sufferings that time,in the moment I am very busy
here because of the investment projects which I and the new partner are
having at hand, finally remember that I had forwarded instruction to my
secretary on your behalf to receive that $3 Million United State Dollars,
so feel free to get in touch with him at above email address and he will
send the amount to you without any delay.
Make sure that you contact my secretary Blessing Orlando with this email
Hon.Barrister Marcel Eze.
This email is free from viruses and malware because avast! Antivirus protection is active.