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:
- "(efcc)" (This name is often mentioned in money recovery scams (re-scam): the real EFCC does not contact victims to offer to get their money back because that is near impossible. )
- "lagos" (a location commonly mentioned in 419 scams)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: "From Head Office FedEx Nigeria" (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 4 May 2021 14:11:08 +0200
Subject: FedEx does not ship money in CASH but BANK DRAFTS and ATM CARDS can be shipped.
Head Office FedEx Nigeria
70 International Airport Road
Attention: Dear Customer
This email is coming to you as a reminder concerning your pending package that has been with us for weeks now before dispatch. However, we cannot quote its content to you via email for privacy reasons. We understand that the content of your package itself is an ATM MASTER-CARD registered in your name and in the amount of US$850,000,00 (Eight Hundred And Fifty Thousand Dollars) submitted for delivery to you by the paying bank (UBA) affiliated to the Economic FinancialCrimes Commission (EFCC) here in Nigeria. As you already know, FedEx does not ship money in CASH but BANK DRAFTS and ATM CARDS can be shipped.
This email is to let you know that our delivery team has finally carried out delivery to your address. The package left Lagos Nigeria on May 13th 2019 and since on the 27th of feb 2021 it has been at Memphis USA awaiting clearance due to breakdown in communication.
You are advised to get back to me as soon as possible so instructions can be given to you on how to clear the package. You are hereby advised to reconfirm below details so we can immediately have it sent out to our delivery team in Memphis.
Your Name (In Full):
Your Delivery Address:
Your Direct Telephone Number:
Haven tracked your parcel, it confirmed the status of delivery been pending at Memphis TN awaiting clearance due to lack of Fund registration and Incorporation from the IMF, all you need to do is take care of the clearance charge and re-direction fee valued at $100 being the cost of securing your fund registration and incorporation certificate demanded by the Custom authorities in USA, the parcel will be released and re-directed to your address. Note that payment for the registration and incorporation letter from the IMF are to certify that the ATM MASTER-CARD is not a Drug Affiliated Fund (DAF) neither is it funds to sponsor Terrorism as it will help you avoid any form of query from the Monetary Authority of your country. .
The clearance charge to be paid by you is $100 Only. You are to send the clearance charge of $100 immediately through you buyer google play card or iTunes card of $100 today
This is important and as such your immediate response will do you Good.
Waiting to read your e-mail,
Yours In Service
Mr. TERRY MARTINS
Branch Manager FedEx Nigeria.