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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:

Date: Fri, 22 Jun 2012 15:36:37 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Pick up your $4,500usd immediately. Call +229-98-822-378.

Attention Dear,

This is to inform you that the America Embassy office was instructed to transfer your fund $985,000.00 U.S Dollars compensating all the SCAM VICTIMS, and your email was found as one of the VICTIMS by the America security leading team and America’s representative officers. So between today the 11th of Jun till 30th Of June 2012 you will be receiving the sum of $4,500 dollars per day. However be informed that we have already sent the $4,500 dollars this morning to avoid cancellation of your payment, remaining the total sum of $980,500.00.
You have only six hours to call this office upon the receipt of this email the maximum amount you will be receiving per day “starting from today is $4,500 and the Money Transfer Control Number of today is below.
NOTE; The sent $4,500 is on hold because of the instruction from US Embassy’s Delegates, they asked us to place it on hold by requesting the (Clean Bill Record Certificate) in order to fulfill all necessary obligation to avoid any hitches while sending you the payment through Western Union money transfer, the necessary obligation i mean here is to obtain the (Clean Bill Record Certificate).
Below is the information of today, you may not be able to track it in our website , because the obligation has not been carried out. We haven’t effected it online for security reasons, to avoid hackers stealing the money online.
1)Sender First Name:::: Joseph
2)Senders Last Name::: Ude
3)MTCN Number::: 9261341221
4)Text Question::: Time
6)Amount::: $4,500.00
We need the below details from you, to enable us fully activate the payment to your name for it to reflect in your country's western union branch office, and to update our file records:
1. YOUR FULL NAMES:=========
2. Postal ADDRESS:==========
3. PHONE NUMBER:============
4. CELL NUMBERS:============
5. EMAIL ADDRESS:===========
6. SEX:=====================
7. AGE:=====================
8. OCCUPATION:==============
9. NATIONALITY:=============
Furthermore you are advised to call us as the instruction was passed that within 6hours without hearing from you, Consider your payment canceled.
Number to call is the below listed managing director's office of the release order:+229-98-822378.
Email them via ( ) immediately!!!
(Western Union Mgr Benin Rep. )

Anti-fraud resources: