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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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:
- "hundred thousand united states dollars" (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)
- "(ecowas)" (the name of a person or institution often appearing in 419 scams)
- "ecowas " (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.
- 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.
- firstname.lastname@example.org (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: Office Of the Special Assistant to the President <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 5 Nov 2018 02:47:03 -0800
Subject: ACCEPT YOUR APPROVED SCAM VICTIM COMPENSATION AS WE BID TO MAKE AMERICA
FROM THE OFFICE OF SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO THE PRESIDENT AND
SENIOR DIRECTOR FOR GLOBAL ECONOMICS AND FINANCE
AT NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL / NATIONAL ECONOMIC COUNCIL
WASHINGTON D.C. METRO AREA / INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS
In the bid to make AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, the US government has mandated the Economic Community of West Africa (ECOWAS) to pay compensation to all our citizens that fall prey to the antics of the dreaded Nigerian, Benin republic, Ghana and other West Africa International Scam Artist.
This resolution was reached at the meeting held by the ECOWAS member states and the UNITED STATES Officials at Washington, D.C.
The above authorities has resolved that all affected people be compensated with the sum of US$1.8M, One Million Eight Hundred Thousand United States Dollars and the US FEDERAL RESERVE BANK was mandated to disburse the fund to enable the United States government closely monitor the process to ensure that all the victims get their compensation fund without any delay.
After a thorough investigation by FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION in conjunction with (ECOWAS), Your name unfortunately was among those that fall prey to the antics of the Scam Artist,.
We are aware that most of the affected persons must have spent more than the above approved compensation fund, but we urge you to accept the little token with faith, and please bear in mind that there is no money anywhere to be transferred to you by those fraudulent Nigerian, Benin republic, Ghana and all West Africa scam artist.
You are therefore advised to desist from any form of communication with any person or group of persons in West Africa or Oversea in regards to any funds as there is no such fund in existence.
You are to contact Mr. Randal K. Quarles, the Vice Chairman for Payments, Supervision and Settlement, Federal Reserve Bank for the release of your US$1.8M ECOWAS scam victims compensation fund to you.
Contact him and forward to him the below stated information's for Verification.
Contact Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Full Name &Address
A copy of your ID CARD
Finally, desist from any form of communication with any person or group of persons in West Africa or Oversea in regards to any funds as there is no such fund in existence.
WE WILL MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN
Special Assistant to the President and
Senior Director for Global Economics and Finance
at National Security Council / National Economic Council
Washington D.C. Metro Area/International Affairs