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:
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "diplomatic agent" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- "@diplomats.com" ("diplomats" who perform deliveries of cash or other valuables to you only exist in 419 scams)
- "courier company" (Courier companies mentioned in 419 scams are always fake. They will have you send money to them, but won't deliver anything. )
- This email message is a next of kin scam.
- 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 (Outblaze.com, Hong Kong; can be used from anywhere worldwide)
Fraud email example:
From: IMPEX COURIER COMPANY <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 2019 09:32:30 -1200
Subject: Attn Your Atm Card Delivery Notice Urgent Reply
This is to notify you that your inheritance fund of $2.5 Million as
approved by the Finance Ministry has been uploaded into Visa ATM card
by the bank and is ready to be sent to you .You have to get in contact
with our carrier diplomatic agent on his e mail firstname.lastname@example.org
and arrange with him the day he will be coming to your home for the
Note that in your reply to this mail, you have to receonfirm to him
your following information as listed below
1.Your full name====================
3.Your Cell Phone No================
6.Name Of Next of Kin If Any========
7.Name Of Your Airport==============
Do not make any mistake with the above listed information to avoid
wrong delivery of your fund atm card.
Mr Ken Obi.
Manager, Impex Courier Company Benin