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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: James William <>
Date: Tue, 15 Nov 2011 05:15:24 +0800 (SGT)


I have contacted you because I have sent you the first transfer of $5000 from your winning funds total amount of $1.5Million USD. Therefore you need to contact Western Union agent Mr. Jerry Michael, to give you the transfer payment information and Western Union MTCN immediately you call or email him.

Western Union Agent: Mr. Jerry Michael,

Office#: +229 98644349

Please try to contact him immediately for him to furnish you with the WU MTCN information to you and remember to indicate the registration Code Number: EB-2237 to him, when contacting or calling him, He will be sending you $5000. 00 daily as per our board meeting discussion with him.

Do get in touch with me once you have gotten the transfer completely thank you.

Mr,James William
IMF Managing Director

Anti-fraud resources: