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:
- "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)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: USADF <email@example.com>
Date: Fri, 30 Aug 2019 01:18:57 -0700
Subject: 29 AUGUST
RE: CURRENT GRANT OPPORTUNITIES
After monitoring your contribution to the society we deemed it fit to give you grant (money),
USD4,800,000.00 from U.S. African Development Foundation (USADF) project surplus fund on your request.
Feel free to call: +1206 485-0283 for detail and action
Emmanuel D. Ego
Assistant Program Coordinator
The United States, African Development Foundation (USADF)
Address: 1400 I St NW Suite 1000, Washington, DC 20005, USA
The U.S. African Development Foundation (USADF) is an independent federal agency established to support
African-led development that grows community enterprises by providing seed capital and technical support.
USADF meets the demand of local enterprises to expand markets and create pathways to prosperity.Sahel,
Horn and Great Lakes region,
empowering vulnerable populations such as ethnic and religious minorities, pastoralists, youth and women,
and those living with disabilities create sustainable livelihoods.