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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: "Godwin Gayeh" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 22 Oct 2011 20:01:35 -0000

Good day,
It is for our urgent need for foreign partner that made me to contact you, I believe you will honor the invitation and assist us.
My name is Godwin Gayeh, I am 21 years, i and my sick mother inherited the sum of Nine Million United States dollars ($9,000,000.00) from my father, who was killed by unknown persons during the recent political crises in this country, Cote d'Ivoire.
The fund is concealed in a consignment (box) and was deposited in a security firm in Europe.
My mother is very sick at the hospital and she is suffering from cancer of the blood, Leukemia, According to her doctor, her condition is very bad.
My late father told the security company that his foreign partner will be responsible for the release and transfer of the consignment, before he died.
That is the reason we are seeking your assistance, to contact the firm for the release, and transfer of the consignment to you, for investments.

We will offer you 20% and you will help to bring me and my mother to your country, l will further my education while my mother will be treated at a good hospital.
Please do not worry, the funds are legal and the documents about the deposit are with us, I will send them to you.
My mother requests that you keep this transaction confidential, till we finalize all.
Thanks and sincerely yours.
Godwin Gayeh.

Anti-fraud resources: