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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: "Mike Lesle" <>
Date: Fri, 02 Sep 2005 00:47:28 +0000
Subject: Contact me asap

Mr.Mike Lesle.
Member/Board of Directors,
HSBC Bank Plc.
56 Tooting High St, Summerstown,
London, SW17 0SP England.
Private E-mail:

Dear Friend,


I am seeking for your co-operation to present you to my bank as the
next of kin/will beneficiary to Mr. Andreas Schranner, a foreign
contractor from Germany who died on a plane crash on July 25th 2000 with his
wife Maria and their daughter Eich with her husband and their two children
perished in the air France Concorde New York bound flight; please click
here for verification.

Before his death he was a contractor to British National Petroleum
Cooperation (BNPC) and has a bank balance with my bank to the tune of (30
million pounds sterling GB) which will be paid to you as his
beneficiary. for your information, I am the Head of Investigation Department
HSBC Bank Plc London.

The board of directors of HSBC Bank Plc, mandated me to look for any
known relation of Mr. Andreas Schranner, since, after his death however
all my efforts traces abortive, that is the main reason i am writing you
this to ask for your co-operation for us to claim this money because
it will amount to injustice if I do not take this decisive step to
secure this deposit and invest it, because if nobody comes forward to claim
the fund it will be forfeited to the government, based on that I have
contacted you to assist me in making this transaction a reality.

I only have to approve you as the next of kin/will beneficiary and the
fund will be paid to you as the beneficiary. We are to share this money
between ourselves and also donate 10% to charity and the tsunami
victims if you are really interested in this offer you should contact me
through this email address:

For detail of this transaction and procedures, pls do forward me your
full name, address, phone number, your company name or occupation these
info are vital to the success of this transaction.

Note that this transaction is risk free. I will commence immediately to
secure all legal documents in your favor on your acceptance to fully
cooperate with me.

I await your urgent response to enable us jumpstart this project and
nurture it to reality.

Yours faithfully,

Mr.Mike Lesle.
Member/Board of Directors
HSBC Bank Plc.

Anti-fraud resources: