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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: "AHMED SALIM" <> (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 22 May 2005 22:05:16 +0200
Subject: urgent and confidential investment

Dear Sir,
I received encouraging information about you and how trust worthy you are. I am delighted with such a useful
information. I am interested in the partnership investment program with your corporation. First
permit me to introduce myself I am the personal assistant to MOHAMED OULD NAFAA (The
Minister of Construction) of the Western Sahara State in the democratic Republic of Sahara (A tiny
country in the Desert). Being the personal assistant to the minister of Construction of my country, I awarded
the contract of IRRIGATION to Portuguese Firm worth several millions of dollars. In the execution
of that project the Portuguese firm discovered large amount of gold in one of the contract sites. I
collaborated with the Portuguese firm on a mutual agreement on the proceed of which I have received
my share of $25,000,000.00 (TWENTY five million dollars). As the personal assistant to the minister of this
Tiny country, I cannot introduce or circulate this funds into the Sahara banking system onsidering my provision
al duty and considering the fact that I earn less than $1,000.00 monthly coupled with the code of conduct
guidelines and regulations for Public Civil Servants.right now my country western sahara is in a civil crisis with
morroco because of our struggle for political independence.the crisis is intensfing everyday i
decied to leave with my family once i am able to move my money out from western sahara.The above
situation prompted my decision to solicit your co-operation to take delivery of this funds into your
custody for my proposed investment as you will be adequately conpensated with $2 000,000.00. I will
arrage all necessary procedures in ensuring a smooth process for the funds to get to you. I will appreciate
you contact me once you receive this mail via e-mail account indication your capability and willingness to
enable me to give you more details of my modus operandi of getting this money to you hitchfree. This
matter requires your urgent attention and confidentiality whatever your decision or you can send your reply
through my email
Best regards,
Western Sahara

Anti-fraud resources: