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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: "MR.ELVIS JONES" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sun, 2 May 2010 07:47:27 +0100
Subject: Attn: The Beneficiary,

Attn: The Beneficiary,

This is to inform you that your overdue inheritance/contract funds $15.5M has been approved, meanwhile,two men and an attoney came to my office few days ago with a letter,claiming to be from you,if do reconfirm to this office your full name/address/ your phone and fax,ID,to let this office know if you ask them to claim your fund.

Waiting for your reply.

Best Regards.

Elvis Jones
Chairman,Foreign Payment Committee
My direct Number: +234-813-477-9191

Anti-fraud resources: