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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: "Mr.Paul..Jacob" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Fri, 27 Jul 2012 04:56:28 -0700

Greetings !!!,Good day to you out there.My name is Mr.Jacob Paul , I have a Business Proposal of three million, seven hundred thousand US dollars($3.7M) for you to handle with me from my bank where I work , here in Europe. However, this is not mandatory nor will I in any manner compel you to honor against your will.Should you be interested, please send me your full names,private phone/fax number and office or home address,age and occupation .
Then after I shall provide you with more details of this operation.I expect your urgent response if you can handle this project .Kind Regards,Jacob.

Anti-fraud resources: