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:
- An email address listed inside this email has been used in a known fraud before.
- 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.
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
- 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.
- email@example.com (email address has been used in a known fraud before)
Fraud email example:
From: "Ms. Liu Chunying" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 16 Apr 2020 23:50:46 -0700
Subject: Re: Ms. Liu Chunying Message You
I am Ms. Liu Chunying,female and the Audit Manager Asia
Foreign Contractorâs Settlement Centre China Branch. My office monitors
and controls all foreign contract settlement here in Hubei Province of China.
I am the final signatory to every payment files for the remittance of huge
funds moving within both on the local and international levels in line
with foreign claim settlement.
I wish to place your name as the beneficiary of eighteen million five
hundred thousand dollars from an over-invoiced contract amount here in
I assure you that this transaction will be executed under a legitimate
arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the law both in
your country and here in China once the fund is transferred to your
I therefore solicit your cooperation to be in collaboration with me to
have this done, I will need you to provide the following information
urgently to enable me start the processing of the all the relevant
legal documents for the fund remittance.
Our sharing pattern once successful is 40 percent for your assistance
while I retain 60 percent
Please reply strictly on this my direct email address email@example.com
Waiting for your reply soon.
Ms. Liu Chunying.
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