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.
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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.
- 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 (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: "Enrg koh Siak Khee Ken" <>
Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2017 17:46:59 +0100
Subject: Attn: PLEASE READ CAREFULLY
I am Enrg koh SK Ken, I work with Winglung Private Bank Hongkong. I did like to inform you about a complicated situations as we are having here in the Bank.
Please carefully note details, there is a bond fund here with our Bank registered in the name of a late client, who bear the same name/surname with you and his details will be revealed to you in my next message. So due to dormant and inactivity from this account, I made a private search to find you viable as you share same surname with the said late client of Winglung Bank, who have deposited the sum of 26 million Euros in a bond account for many years.
Please I need you to understand that I am doing this in expectation of trust, understanding and benefits. So I can also be able to feed you with more details or guide you along the release process. Rememeber my job is on a line and also my personality. I am keeping this deal personal between us, as it has been a plan from the Bank to keep the funds secret until date of confiscation.
I will be glad if you note your interest in response, also feel free to ask any question as I also have some more questions for you before I open up details.
Your kind response will be highly appreciated.
Enrg koh Siak Khee Ken