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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: "Estavan Pedro" <>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2008 10:33:15 +0100
Subject: Dear Friend,

Dear Friend,

I am happy to inform you about my success in getting the funds transferred
under the cooperation of a new partner from Paraguay. Presently I am in
Paraguay for investment projects with my own share of the total sum.
Meanwhile, I did not forget your past efforts and attempts to assist me in
transferring the funds despite that it failed us somehow.

In appreciation of your assistance i have mapped out as compensation and
wrote on your favor a bank draft of $950,000 (Nine hundred and fifty
thousand us dollars) i left the draft with my secretary on my departure to

Now contact my secretary Joseph Macario, C/ Santa Leonor 24 – 28037 Madrid,
Spain. email: ask him to send you the total sum
$950,000 which i kept for your compensation for all your past efforts and
attempts to assist me in this matter.

Best regards,


Anti-fraud resources: