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.
Click here to report a problem with this page.
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:
- "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)
- "fund beneficiary" (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)
- "await your urgent response" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "BANK OF CHINA (UK)" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Mon, 9 Dec 2019 17:06:45 +0100
Subject: Are you DEAD or ALIVE?
*Assistant General Manager Bank of China (UK) 90 CANNON STREET LONDON EC4N
6HA UK *
*Attn: Fund Beneficiary:Payment Code:R578906K: 9/12/2019*
Please kindly be notified that we have been mandated by the (World Bank of
Switzerland) to contact you, regarding the release of your Approved funds.
Therefore, We write to know if it's true that you are DEAD because we
received a notification from one (MR. GERSHON SHAPIRO) of USA stating that
you are DEAD and that you have given him the right to claim your
OUTSTANDING FUND (3,900,000,00) Three Million Nine Hundred Thousand United
States Dollars only. He stated that you died of cancer. He has been calling
us regarding this issue, but we cannot proceed with him until we confirm
this by not hearing from you after 7 working days.
Be advised that we have made all arrangements for you to receive and
confirm your funds without anymore stress and without any further delays.
All we need to confirm now is your being DEAD Or still ALIVE because this
man's message brought shock to our minds and we just can't proceed with him
until we confirm if this is a reality or not but if it happened that we did
not hear from you after 7 days, then we say: MAY YOUR SOUL REST IN PERFECT
If you are well and alive then confirm this message and reconfirm your
Information without any further delay. Send your responses to us
immediately by email.
1. Bank Name:......................
2. Bank Address:................
3. Bank Account No:............
4. Beneficiary's Name:..........
5. Swift Code:.......................
6. ABA/Routing No:.......
7. The data page of your international passport scanned and send to this
office, this is very important.
We await your urgent response.
Mr. Huabin Wang,
Assistant General Manager
Bank of China London UK.