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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: "Joo Cawthra" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Tue, 13 Apr 2010 20:23:42 +0100
Subject: 2nd Attempt

Attn: Please,
We wish to notify you again that you were listed as a Heir to the total sum of Five Million British Pounds in the codicil and last testament of our deceased client. Name now withheld since this is our second letter to you.

A regular mail was dispatched to you but yet no reply from you. We are contacting you again because her instruction stipulates that this fund should be paid directly to you upon her demise.

We request you to kindly acknowledge officially, enabling us file all necessary legal documents to the paying bank for the urgent release of your inheritance.

Please send an acknowledgment email and call to enable us process your inheritance.

Yours Truly,
Joo Cawthra
South Wales UK.
Tel: +447024037813

Anti-fraud resources: