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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: "tarek omar" <>
Date: Fri, 22 Aug 2008 23:32:34 +0000

Dear Friend,


I know that this mail will come to you as a surprise as we have never met
before, but need not to worry as I am using the only secured and
confidential medium available to seek for your foreign assistance in a
business. I am contacting you independently of my investigation and no one
is informed of this communication.

I need your urgent assistance in transferring the sum of $11.3million
immediately to your private account. The money has been here in our Bank
lying dormant for nine good years now without anybody coming for the claim
of it.

I want to release the money to you as the nearest person to our deceased
customer (the account owner) who died a long with his supposed NEXT OF KIN
since August 1997.
The Banking ethics here does not allow such money to stay more than 11
years, because the money will be recalled to the Bank treasury as unclaimed

Upon receipt of your reply indicating your interest in this transaction,I
will send you full details on how the business will be executed.

Please keep this proposal as a top secret and delete if you are not


Bank Of Africa,Burkina Faso-West Africa

Anti-fraud resources: