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"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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Fraud email example:

From: "Dr Clement Kwashie" <> (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 7 Jun 2005 18:01:12 +0100

Dear Friend.
I am Clement k. the bills and exchange director at the standard chartered bank , I am writing this letter to solicit for support and assistance from you to carry out this business opportunity in my department. Lying in an inactive account is the sum of $30.7m belonging to a foreign customer(mr James Kelly) who happens to be deceased. he died with his wife and two children in a plane crash on board an ADC airline flight at the Egirin river in November 1996. Ever since he died the bank has been expecting his next of kin to come and claim these fund. To this effect, we can not release the money unless someone applies for it as next of kin, as indicated in our banking guideline. Unfortunately he has no family member in Africa or America who are aware of the existence of the money. At this juncture i have decided to do business with you in collaboration with officials that matter in the bank, to this effect we solicit your assistance in applying as the next of kin then the money will
be released to you. As we do not want this money to go into the bank treasury as an unclaimed bill. The banking law and guideline stipulates that if such money(s) remains unclaimed for a period of up to six years(6yrs) the money will be transferred into the banks treasury as an unclaimed bill. Our request for a foreigner as next of kin is occasioned by the fact that the customer was a foreigner and an African cannot stand as next of kin. Sir, 20% of the money will be your share as a foreign partner and your assistance to actualise this business 5% for any expenses incurred. Thereafter my partner and i will visit your country with your help once the money hits your account for disbursement according to the percentage indicated. To effect the immediate transfer of the fund to you as agreed, you must apply first to the bank as the next of kin to the decease, then we will follow up all formalities for the transaction. Upon receipt of your reply, i will send to you by fax or mail th
e text of the application, as soon as you receive the text i will further clarify you in other issues as to affect the business. Await to hear from you Best Regards Dr.Clement kwashie.

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