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:
- "transfer of your funds" (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)
- ",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)
- "central bank of nigeria" (the name of a person or institution often appearing 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: "Transfer Department" <email@example.com>
Date: Wed, 13 Jun 2018 23:08:20 -0700
Subject: Re: Payment Notification
Attn: Esteemed Beneficiary,
This is to inform you that the Central Bank Of Nigeria has mandated by the Presidency of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to remit your outstanding funding which is in a suspense deposit account here valued of $10,500,000.00 us dollars
The management will also like to inform you that our remittance department has been receiving different request from different individuals/companies, for the release of your funds and a change to the beneficiary status and account details.Recently, there was a formal request by Mr. Andrew Lee from your country for the change of the beneficiary to his personal bank through some individuals claiming to be your local representatives here in Nigeria.
The management will like you to send the following information for the successful transfer of your funds and also to avoid the transfer of your funds into a different nominated account.
The information required from you are listed below:
1) Your full name and address
2) Your Mobile telephone no:
3) Any Means of Identification:
Simply because of the intense rate of fraudulent activities going on in Nigeria, we have concluded to handle everything effectively .For further instructions on how your funds will be transferred kindly respond to this email.
In regards to the present situation, a lot of people are claiming that you gave them authority over your funds and you are therefore advised in your own interest to cut off all communications between you and your local representatives to avoid been scammed as this management will not be resposible for any loss.
The Management will like to apologize on behalf on the Federal Government of Nigeria for the long delay of the transfer of your funds into your account.
Please feel free to contact me here only for further clarifications regarding this matter.
Mr. Edward Adamu
Financial System Stability
Central Bank of Nigeria