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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: Traore Sekou <>
Date: Thu, 26 Jul 2012 21:39:33 +0100 (BST)
Subject: Dear Friend

Dear Friend,
Good day and sorry for the way this email came to you as I'm in desperate need of your help to transfer the sum of $20.5 Million Dollars belonging to an aid to Colonel Gadahafi whose name I cannot mention for security reasons who also died in the fierce fighting in Sirte Libya and before his death I was his personal accounts Manager here in Burkina Faso where He secretly lodged this money without anyone else knowledge except me and the Bank.
I want you to apply to my Bank as the next of kin hence I can provide you with all the informations that can lead to the release of the money into your account as long as you can bear the cost of procuring certain legal certificates that will be needed to change the fund in your name which must be presented to the Bank before the fund is released to you as the nearest person and in confrmation of your interest, I will like you to furnish me with the below informations as 60% of the fund will be for me and 40% for you :
Your Name......................
Your occupation....................
Your Country of origin..............
Your age and contact number..........
I shall furnish you with the details of the deal once I receive the above requirements and please feel free to delete the message if you are not interested and do keep the secret for me so that I can look for another reliable person.
Thanks in Anticipation.
Traore Sekou.

Anti-fraud resources: