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:
- "western union" (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. )
- "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. )
- "million us 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)
- "you are advice to " (this email uses bad English)
- "united state of america" (this email uses bad English)
- "power of attorney" (with your bank details and a power of attorney form criminals sometimes empty bank accounts)
- "cotonou" (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.
- Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.
- Western Union money transfer is completely untraceable and therefore is *not* safe to use with anyone you do not know personally. It is the preferred method of online criminals to collect money from their victims.
- 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: "Mrs, Rose Mark" <"www."@poem.ocn.ne.jp>
Reply-To: "Mrs, Rose Mark" <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2017 17:26:00 +0900 (JST)
Subject: Attention: Please,
01 Bp 1478 Cotonou. Benin Republic
Tele phone: +229 98648595
A power of attorney was forwarded to our office this morning by one gentle man and he is a citizen from united state of America and his name is Mr. Richard S. Goldberg This man claimed to be your representative and this power of attorney stated that you are dead after brief illness and he brought account to replace your information in other to claim your fund of $15.8 million us dollars which is now lying dormant and unclaimed, below is the new account he have submitted:
Account# / 6503809428.
Address 1076 Peter Johnson Road
New York, USA,
Be further informed that this power of attorney also stated that you suffered and died of a throat cancer. You are therefore given 24hrs to confirm the truth in this information, If you are still alive, You are to contact us back immediately, Because
we work 24 hrs just to ensure that we monitor all the activities going on in regards to the transfer of beneficiaries inheritance and contract payment.
You are to call this office immediately for clarifications on this matter as we shall be available 24 hrs to speak with you and give you the necessary guidelines on how to ensure that your payment is wired to you immediately and also be inform that any further delay from your side could be dangerous, as we would not be held responsible for any wrong payment. Contact us as soon as possible if you are truly alive as we have his identification and residence he provide for us to wired the payment to him.
The total amount you have is $15,8 Million USA Dollars. Here is the information$B!G(Bs to send the money so that we will help you complete it because the $95.00 is only money you have to send until you receive all your payment complete, Send the money through western union money transfer below:
Receivers Name:.DAN BEN
Country ...Benin Republic
AMOUNT to send:... $95.USD
I am looking forward to hear from you right way because i hate any thing promise and fail, The amount you have to send now is $95.00 but please make sure that you send the money once you receive this mails so that we will give the full information$B!G(Bs
for you to pick up the first payment immediately. After you send the needed $95.00 before we can give you full information$B!G(Bs to pick it up today.
I swear to God almighty Father. If I fail to release your payment within 2hours after you send the $95.00 as I promise you that you receive, please I am expecting you with western union payment information$B!G(Bs so that the transfer will commence immediately without further delay because i believe that we will conclude this transaction successful this year. As you can see that I swear against because this transaction and also to show you the honest and truth I am if i confirmed that you are
Meanwhile you are advice to reconfirm your detail such as
Your full name...........
Your full Address......
And your current working telephone number............
Mrs, Rose Mark
International Monetary Funds Payment Office.
Republic Du Benin