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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: "Frank Kelly" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Tue, 13 Apr 2010 19:31:10 -0700
Subject: Dearest.Friend


I m happy inform you of my success in transferring the funds under the cooperation of a new partner from India. Presently I'am in India for investment projects with my own share of the total sum.

Meanwhile,I didn't forget your past efforts and attempts to assist me with these transfer,
Now contact my secretary,his name is Michael Obi and his email address is ( ) ask him to send you the total US$800,000.00 in a Certified Bank Draft which i kept for your compensation for all the past efforts and attempts to assist me in this matter.

Please do let me know immediately you receive it so that we can share the joy after all the suffering at that time. in the moment, I am very busy here with investments with my new partner.

Make sure you contact him without immedaitely, Michael Obi and
he will send the amount to you without any delay.

Best Regards.

Frank Kelly

Anti-fraud resources: