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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: Dr David Hess <>
Date: Thu, 29 Dec 2011 16:06:20 +0800 (SGT)

Dear Friend.

It is my pleasure to contact you as to discuss this transaction with you. I will want to have your trust and to go into partnership transaction with you which must be build on confidentiality between us.

My name are Mr David Hess, there is one of our customers that made fix deposit for 7 fiscal years upon maturity; I sent a routine notification to his forwarding address but got no reply. After some months, we sent a reminder and finally we discovered from his business partner he passed away after brief illness in his country. I tried everything humanly possible to locate his relatives in GERMANY failed. The deposit is still intact with my bank CITI BANK INTL LONDON and the interest is being rolled over with the principal sum at the end of each year.

If this fund (Twenty Five Millions us dollars,25,000,000.00$) still left dormant in the next couple of months the fund will be confiscated into the government treasury as unclaimed fund. It is for these reason's that I have seek for your urgent and sincere help to get this fund transferred into your bank account, a bank account in any part of the world can facilitate the transfer. All that is required of you is to contact my bank with the information’s that I will send to you as the next of kin or business associate of the depositor with this, the fund will be paid into any bank account that you will provide.

To be honest with you, this transaction I have opened-up to you is totally genuine and 100% risk-free. But the secret must remain between me and you, I am assuring you because I have been working with this bank for many years, hence I know all its secrets very well and I have carefully mapped-out my perfect strategies to carry out this transaction successfully. The depositor was my very close friend and I was his personal financial adviser before his death, that being the main reason why I alone working in the bank here, know much about the existence of this fund and the secrets and the depositor. We shall also use part of the fund to help the orphanage, people in the street and the less privilege children in the world. Please keep this proposal as a top secret between both of us, and delete it immediately in your email box, if you are not interested. But if you are interested get back to immediately.

I wait for your response.

Mr David Hess.

Anti-fraud resources: