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:
- "million 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)
- ",000,000" (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 Wilson Koht" (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 27 Sep 2020 09:18:14 -0700
Subject: Urgent News From Iraq
My Name is Wilson Koht, I was a Contractor with the American troop served in the third infantry division Unit in Iraq in the year 2003
I am currently AWOL. My partner Darren D. Braswell,36, of Riverdale, Ga., died during this opeartion in Iraq, before his death We secretly moved some abandoned cash in a mansion belonging to the former president, Saddam Hussein and the total cash is US$8,000,000.00 Eight Million Dollars.
As I write this letter to you, these boxes are in Security Company as I secretly moved it out of Baghdad to safe place and since then has been laying low,I seek your consent to help me move this money to your country location.
You can read more on this website for more information and explanations: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/2988455.stm
Yours in Service.