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:
- 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:
- ",500,000" (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:
Date: Sat, 03 Apr 2021 17:09:49 +0200
International Monetary Fund (IMF)
Office of the Special Representative to the UN.
This is to intimate you of a very important information which will be of great help to redeem you from all the difficulties you have been experiencing in getting your long overdue payment due to excessive demand for money from you by both corrupt Bank officials and Courier Companies after which your fund remains unpaid to you.
I am Mrs. Priscilla Braver a highly placed official of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) It may interest you to know that reports have reached our office by so many correspondence on the uneasy way which people like you are being treated by Various Banks and Courier Companies across Europe to Africa and Asia and we have decided to put a stop to that and that is why i am appointed to handle your transaction.
Note; All Governmental and Non-Governmental parasites, NGOs, Finance Companies, Banks, Security Companies and Courier companies which have been in contact with you of late have been instructed to back off from your transaction and you have been advised NOT to respond to them anymore since my office is now directly in charge of your payment.
You are hereby advised NOT to remit further payment to any institutions with respect to your transaction as your fund will be released to you directly from our source. I hope this is clear. Any action contrary to these instructions is at your own risk.
I'm using this medium to promise you that immediately you provide the information below for reconfirmation of your personal information i shall direct you to the paying bank where your fund (US$10,500,000.00) is currently deposited and separately operating on your name but your wrong dealings did not make you know the right offices to deal with.
In view of the above you are advised to provide the information below to facilitate the immediate release of your fund.
1) Your Full Name:
2) Phone, Fax and Mobile:
3) Company\'S Name, Position and Address:
4) Profession, Age and Marital Status
Kindly send the above required information to us via and upon the receipt of the above mentioned information we shall proceed in filing a claim with the bank and get back to you with further details on how your fund will be released. Awaiting your earliest response.
Mrs. Priscilla Braver
Senior Resident Representative in USA.
International Monetary Fund (IMF).