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:
- ",500,000" (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)
- "00,000.00" (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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Flora Andrew <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Reply-To: Flora Andrew <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2017 22:28:09 +0900 (JST)
Subject: Mrs. Flora Andrew
My name is Mrs. Flora Andrew. I am 57 years old woman, I my deceased husband Mr. Johnnmak Andrew married.
I and my deceased Husband, where both Serbian citizens in Europe and we lived here in West Africa (Ivory Coast) for the past 17 years ago. My deceased husband worked with an oil drilling company from an overseas resident for many years before he died. I and my deceased husband were both married without a single biological child of our own.
I currently have a serious breast cancer illness and I am writing this message with the help of a doctor here in the hospital. When my late husband was still alive, he deposited the sum of two million five hundred thousand euros (2,500,000.00 euros) in the bank here in Africa and he signed the fund an agreement with the bank that the fund will be used for
beneficial purposes for example; Helping the motherless babies to support charity activities and for those who does not less privilege children to keep their education. I contacted you today because my private surgeon is just getting close, my breast cancer disease is getting worst,
the bank here in Africa Will misappropriate the funds because I have no other relatives to demand the money. I would like you to help me transfer the money to your bank account in your country and after transferring it to your bank account; You will receive the compensation for your own 25% (375,000.00 euros) of the total funds and the remaining 75% (1125, â¬ 000.00) to do the charity work in your country. I will wait to read from you to give you more details
Mrs. Flora Andrew