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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: Alex King <>
Date: Thu, 26 Jul 2012 09:47:52 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Thanks for your cooperation.

>From Mr. Alex King.
Eco bank-Abidjan

 Dear friend,

 My name is Mr. Alex King .I work with the Eco Bank of Abidjan , Cote D Ivoire as an accountant foreign operation department. In the discharge of my duty, I stumbled on this domiciliary account that has remained dormant for three years now with fifteen million dollars ($15m) in it. I contacted my director and we sent out staff for inquiries and discovered that the account holder died in Auto-crash with the next of kin.

I am writing you so that we can work with you and transfer the fund with your name as the next of kin. It is simple process which will take a short while to process. Outside this, the bank management will confiscate the money.

If I hear from you , I will tell you all you need to know about the money.
Thanks for your cooperation.

 Best Regards
 Mr. Alex King

Anti-fraud resources: