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:
- "dear beneficiary," (this SPAM email was probably sent to thousands of people)
- "lagos" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- This email lists mobile phone numbers. Use of such numbers is typical for scams because they allow criminals to conceal their true location. They can receive calls in an Internet cafe from where they send you emails, while pretending to be in some office.
- 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 (Gmail/GoogleMail; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: MR JIDENNA CYRIL <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 2019 15:24:01 -0800
Subject: BENEFICIARY, YOUR COMPASSION FUND OF $USD7,500 000
ACCESS BANK FOR AFRICA NIGERIA
47, Market Odunlami St,
Somolu 100246, Lagos
P.O. BOX 3008
PHONE: +234 9027986983
FAX: 234 330 710 8888
I am very sorry to reach you through this medium. I am a member of the Acce=
ss bank debt Recovery Unit and I am aware of your ordeal about your unpaid =
We have been informed this day by the concern authority to have your fund r=
elease process completed otherwise, the funds will be declared unserviceabl=
e by the bank. =
United states government orders that the Nigerian, Benin Governments and al=
l other African Countries to release the total sum of $USD2 Billion Dollars=
(TWO BILLION UNITED STATES DOLLARS ONLY) which was tagged Unclaimed Fund. =
If you are receiving this notification for the first Time ($USD7, 500,000) =
which is on your name, can only be deliver To You Through UN courier servic=
To this end we request you reconfirm below informations to ensure accurate =
delivery of your fund
NEAREST INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
Your reference code is : (ACC/BANK/0024) Please remember to state it as a s=
ubject when contacting us and your fund will be deliver within 48 hours.The=
refore forward your details to this email: firstname.lastname@example.org
MR JIDENNA CYRIL
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
ACCESS BANK FOR AFRICA.