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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: "User &" <>
Date: Mon, 16 Jan 2012 10:18:13 -1100
Subject: From Stephen Gianino

>From Stephen Gianino
Investigating Officer,
Ministry of Finance
630066 Hatton Garden,
London ECIN 8LE.

Confidential Information

Dear Friend,

My name is Stephen Gianino; I work with the Ministry of Finance, and I have
seen that several times people tried to divert your funds into their own
personal account I mean those you call your partners. Now I write to you in
respect of the amount which I have been able to send to you through the
Federal Government Diplomat who has arrived in Africa, now I want you to
know that the diplomat would deliver the funds which I have package as a
diplomatic compensation to you and the amount in the consignment is
$6,000.000.00 (Six Million Dollars Only).

To this end, I did not disclose the content to the diplomat that the box
contain money but I told him that it is your compensation from the
Government House and from our affiliate in United State, I want you to know
that this funds would help your financial status as I have seen in record in
London and in United State that you have spent a lot trying to receive this
funds. I am not demanding so much from you but Just 40% of the funds.

I want you to get back to me so that I can give you the contact information
of the diplomat who has arrived Africa for the past two days and have been
waiting to get your information so that he can proceed with the delivery to
your doorstep.

Yours Sincerely,
Stephen Gianino

Anti-fraud resources: