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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: "International Monetary Fund \(IMF\)" <>
Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2012 16:31:23 +0800 (SGT)
Subject: International Monetary Fund(IMF)

Monetary Fund (IMF) 
Mr. Dominique Strauss-Kahn
International Monetary Fund (IMF)
700 19th Street P/N Cotonou
Email {

The Transfer arrangement with
Gram Department did not progress due to MoneyGram  Money Transfer cannot
be able to get you the payment because of such larged amount did not to transfer
by MoneyGram money transfer.
The MoneyGram methody was not clear due to
the (I.M.F & others Authorities) did not granted the larged amount we are
trying to get you by MoneyGram, Because of the larged amount I would like it to
be sent to your  bank account in the USA in amounts of $48,000 in each transfer
untill you get the total funds of USD$2.8Million on your name, it is possible to
wire the money into your account and avoid difficulties with the
Please let me know if you like the idea, Note that $59 is
the only cost you will bear to have the first $48000 payment into your account,
this $59 charged is for the form we will use to deposit the money into your
account. email me now and let me know if you will pay this $59 Form fee to have
the first $48000 into your account. , I am very sure of what I said, and it is a
promised. SEND 59 USDollars VIA WESTERN UNION
name========MR.Anukwu Emmanuel
Country ============Benin
City===============Port Novo
Test Question=========Color
Amount============= $59
Send it and get back to
me with the payment info such as MTCN
I beleive that you will get $48000
clear into your account in 48hours.
Try send this court fee and email me
with the MTCN & senders name.
Email {  Thank You.
IMF: Organization and Finances  
 Mr. Dominique Strauss-Kahn/Ban
Managing Director
International Monetary

Anti-fraud resources: