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)
- "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: "Mr. Ben Walker" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 2020 15:27:32 +0100
Subject: Dear Beneficiary, Happy New Year!!!
I am Ben Walker United States Embassy Agent in Dubai United Arab
Emirates: This is to inform you that the International Monetary Fund
[IMF] and the United Nations [UN] are compensating all the scammed
victims with the sum of $1,200,000.00 USD ( One million two hundred
thousand United States Dollars.)
Your name and number was mentioned to the United States Secret Service
by one of the Scammers who was arrested.
Meanwhile this Compensation department has been mandated by the IMF
and the United Nations to deliver your compensation funds to you
through United States Embassy here Dubai UAE
which is 100 % Guarantee to release to you as one of the scammed victim.
Furthermore we advise you to stop any further communication with any
other person(s) or office(s) concerning any transaction that you might
have lost your hard earned money to avoid losing more money to other
group of scammers who are on the FBI wanted list and are still on the
run and for this reason we want to warn you not to communicate or
duplicate this message to anyone for any reason whatsoever as the
United States Secret Service are already on the trace for the other
You are hereby advised to Reconfirm the Following Information...
Telephone Number _____________________
To receive your Compensation without further delay
Anticipating your urgent cooperation in other to receive your Fund.
Mr. Ben Walker
USA Embassy in Dubai United Arab Emirates