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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: "Johnson David" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 24 Mar 2012 15:25:47 -0000


My name is Col Johnson David; I am an American soldier, serving in the military with the army's 4th Battalion, 64th Armored Regiment. I need your assistance,

I have summed up courage to contact you. As far as my situation here is concern reaching out via this medium is personally considered safest and the cheapest means of reaching out to you from the U.S.Military base here in the Middle East.

>From all indications you are God sent, with the way and how lucky I was to get
your e-mail contact address from the U.S. military base library address journal through my online search just a few minutes ago.

I am seeking your kind assistance to move the sum of (US$22MILLION) to you, as far as I can be assured that my share will be safe in your care until I complete my service here in Afghanistan. This money was discovered in Iraq in 2003, and the above mentioned amount was given to me as my personal share by my battalion, which includes (Staff Sgt.Kenneth Buff & Sgt.Van Daniel Ess).

The amount (US$22MILLION) was part of money we got when we were in Iraq. Please visit any of the bellow website and

With the speculated troop withdrawal by president Obama, I want to move this
money to you for safe keeping pending the completion of my assignment in Afghanistan.

But, my question is 'CAN I TRUST YOU"?. You will be rewarded with 40% of this
fund for your help. Please respond to personal E-mail ID for further details.

I look forward to hearing from you.


Col Johnson David

Anti-fraud resources: