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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. Thomas Adeniran" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Tue, 28 Sep 2010 01:21:41 +0100
Subject: Intercepted Transfer of $10.5Million

>From the Desk of: Thomas Adeniran
Special Adviser to the President,
International Monetary Fund (IMF)
West Africa Regional Headquarter In Nigeria
Telephone: +234-80-73089969

Intercepted Transfer of $10.5Million

Dear Honourable Beneficiary

I am the special adviser to the President International Monetary Fund (IMF), West African Region in Nigeria,
who is in charge of releasing unpaid fund emanating from Africa, Asia, Europe, Pacific and United States
of America. We noticed you had unpaid funds to the tune of $10.5million. Your funds will be paid to you
from our reserve account with Skye Bank Plc Nigeria within 72hours base on your swift compliance to my

Note we can only pay you through Wire transfer (Bank to Bank). You are advised to indicate your preferred
mode of payment so that we can now register it in our database and necessary arrangement will be made
within 72hours. Be advised that Sanusi Lamido of Central Bank of Nigeria and others has made several
effort to divert your funds to unknown account in Asia but we intercepted their action base on the premise
that we have the sole responsibility to pay you. Call me immediately you receive this email message for oral
and important discussion. Your prompt response will expedite action in the release and transfer of your
funds into any account provided by you.

You are hereby advised to forward the under-listed information to enable us issue you all

clearance document.

Your full name:
Your home address:
Telephone & fax:
Occupation & Position in office:

Looking forward to your earliest response.

Yours faithfully,
Thomas Adeniran

Anti-fraud resources: