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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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Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:

Fraud email example:

From: joel thomson <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Mon, 20 Aug 2007 23:08:33 +0000
Subject: Attn Please,

Attn Please, I am Master JOEL THOMSON from COTE IVORY ABIDJAN am 26years old and presently residing at DAKAR SENEGAL because of the political crisis in my country, I got your contact in strict confidence through Senegal chamber of commerce. I would honestly want to seek for an immediate assisting help from you, I have ($7.400, 000:00USD) with a firm banking in london belonging to my late father MR, THOMSON JULIUS, who was held bondage by the rebels during the crisis and was letter killed. I ran to Senegal refugee camp when I fine out that my life is in danger. My late father has deposited the above mentioned amount in with finance firm for safe keeping of the fund before his death and I have every document regards the transaction. I have contacted the finance firm and confirmed the safety of the money/ inheritance. As it is I have the intention of investing the fund in oversees, and however I needed a foreigner who is capable of giving adequate assistance to me by the way of clearing the money from the finance firm and the reefer forwarding it to your account for investment. I have map out 35% percentage of the fund for you, please do feel free to ask me questions on this as I wait for your reply soonest to my email. Yours trulyJoel Thomson
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