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.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "power of attorney" (with your bank details and a power of attorney form criminals sometimes empty bank accounts)
- 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.
Fraud email example:
From: "Mr. Matthew Paul" (may be fake)
Date: Fri, 24 Nov 2017 21:01:10 -0500
Subject: THIS OFFICE IS HEREBY WARNING YOU !
Dear Esteemed Client
I am confused again.Who is Kenneth F. Jeffrey, your brother.
Address: 1742 Judy Anne Lane, Santa Ana, CA 92705. He just emailed me your power of attorney stating that your total entitlement shall be wired to his account as your next of kin.
He made it clear to me that you are dead and have left all your Title on his care as your next of kin. He told me that this funds will help him take care of your children.
Why...Why did you do this without my knowledge. I wish you were alive..He gave me his bank account in California and new York
to split this funds for him. He will pay any fee involved.
I was surprised why you could not pay for the ownership certificate telex of your $12.5million wire to your account.
It is not possible for me to release your Title to Kenneth without hearing from you.. I am crying...after you have suffered for years to get this funds,,,loose it at the last minute...God forbid.
Please, E-mail me if you are alive...Urgent before it is late.
Banco Santander (México) SA,
Institución de Banca Múltiple,
Grupo Financiero Santander México.
Legal Notic Jorge Alberto Alfaro Lara