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:
- "high court" (Barristers (lawyers) mentioned in 419 scams are always fake.)
- "central bank of nigeria" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- "abuja" (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.
Fraud email example:
From: "MR. ADEBAYO A. ADELABU" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, 8 Sep 2017 18:19:41 +0100
Subject: PAYMENT FILE: CBN/BEN005/.9/.017.
CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA
WUSE 2, GARKI, ABUJA NIGERIA .
PAYMENT FILE: CBN/BEN005/.9/.017.
Definitely, I know that this letter will be a surprising one again to
you, firstly, I will like to introduce myself officially as Mr.
Adebayo A. Adelabu, The Deputy Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria
(CBN) You are been officially contacted today because your
Inheritance/contract Funds was Re-deposited into the "Federal Suspense
Account" of CBN last week, because you did not proceed with your Claim
as the Rightful beneficiary which is well known to the board and
management team of Central Bank of Nigeria. A man named MR. PULLEY
JEWELUS GERVIN came to my office yesterday in connection of your
inheritance/contract fund and this man were unexpected by me because
his visit was out of official appointment. I had to ask them why he
came to see me in person and they said that his were here to claim the
Inheritance/contract sum of (US$10,300,000) which rightfully belongs
to you as your inheritance/contract title on your behalf, at this
development I asked him who authorized them to come down to Nigeria
for the claim of this fund.
honestly this was the biggest shock that this Bank has ever received
so far because your Inheritance/contract Funds is still in the
"Federal Suspense Account" of CBN, yet you sent this man to come and
claim this Funds on your behalf without any official notice to
authorize and permit this bank to do and execute your
inheritance/contract sum to the man whom you authorized to claim your
fund on your behalf. This Bank does not understand why you sent him to
come and claim your Funds on your behalf. If actually you want this
man to help you claim your Inheritance Bill Sum, at least you should
have notified my office so that we will act accordingly than keeping
silent. They actually tendered some Vital Documents which proved that
you actually sent him for the claim of this Fund. Honestly, it really
baffles me that you took such decision without my consent. Here are
the Document which they tendered to this Bank today.
1. LETTER OF ADMINISTRATION.
2. HIGH COURT INJUNCTION.
3. ORDER TO RELEASE.
Actually, these Documents which he tendered to this Bank are Proves
that you sent him to claim this Fund for you. Finally, I gave them an
appointment next week, in order to contact you for verification and
authorization before releasing this fund to this man. As the Governor
of this Central Bank Nigeria, I was supposed to Release this Funds to
him but I refused to do so because I wanted to hear from you first.
Due to the Nature of my job, I will not want to make any mistake in
releasing this Fund to anyone except you whom is the recognized
beneficiary to this Fund.
Kindly clarify us on this issue before we make this Payment to these
foreigners who came on your behalf. In receipt of this confidential
Letter, you are required to get back to me immediately to enable us
proceed with the payment or cancel the payment in their favor and wait
for your next instruction.
MR. ADEBAYO A. ADELABU.
CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA (CBN)
WUSE 2, GARKI, ABUJA NIGERIA.