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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: "williams Coffi" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Mon, 5 Jul 2010 10:22:16 +0100
Subject: From AtmMaster Card Debit settlement .

Debit settlement .
Foreign Operation
ATM Card Department .

Attention benefitiary. Your ATM master card will be canceled, the management of ATM master card department Benin wishes to inform you that we are in receipt of your ATM issued in your favor with cash amount of $850,000usd only, and your agent instructs us to cancel your ATM card. He said that you refused to send him the mailing fee of $275usd which he will use for the mailing of your ATM master card and that is why he want' us to cancel the ATM card.

So you are advised to contact us immediately and tell us what is going on.You can contact our manager. Dr Usman Vincent, on their department ID( sends your full address tell phone and name to him.Before we can take
any action.

Yours faithfully
Williams Coffi.

Anti-fraud resources: