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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: "Barrister Giorgio Salvatore." <>
Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2011 07:35:29 -0500
Subject: Hello.

Dear Friend,

My name is Barr. Giorgio Salvatore of Salvatore Studio Legale in Rome. I
actually got your contact email address through the worldwide email
database. My purpose of contacting you is for you to help secure the funds
left behind by my late client(Late Mr. Richard Lyman), to avoid it being
confiscated or declared unserviceable by the Bank where this fund valued
9,500,000.00 (Nine Million Five Hundred Thousand Euros) deposited by my
client before his death.

I wish to point out that I want 20% of this money to be shared among the
Charity Organizations, while the remaining 80% is shared equally between
us. If you are interested, please contact me via E-mail: or, I shall
provide you with more details and relevant documents that will help you
understand this transaction vividly.

If on the contrary you wish to achieve this goal with me, kindly get back
to me with your interest for further explanations.

Kindest Regards

Barrister Giorgio Salvatore.

Anti-fraud resources: