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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: "Chn" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Thu, 8 Aug 2013 14:59:35 +0800
Subject: The instruction is paramount

I am one of the retired directors in China Petrochemical Corporation otherwise known as Sinopec. I came to know of you in my search for a reliable and reputable person to handle a very confidential transaction which involves the transfer of a substantial amount of money. There were series of contracts executed by a consortium of Multinationals in the oil industry in Hong Kong, among which were;

1) The expansion of Pipeline network for crude oil and downstream products distribution and subsequent evacuation.
2) Contract for Turn around Maintenance (TAM) of various Refineries in Hong Kong.
3) The construction of Storage Tanks for Petroleum Product (Depots).

A Subcontractor (name with held for security reasons) who died intestate in 2005 left behind a substantial amount of money from unpaid executed contracts. There is no known successor or beneficiary to his huge asset to the best of our knowledge.

I am offering you 30% of the principal sum if you agree to stand as successor to his vast estate.

You must however NOTE that this transaction is subject to the following terms and conditions; My conviction of your transparent, honesty and diligence, that you must accord this transaction with utmost confidentiality and secrecy.

You are kindly advised to respond with your complete details such as Full Names and Address, Age and Telephone details to the following Email:

Once more, I want you to understand that having put in over 38 years in the Civil Service of my country; I am very much averse to having my image and career dented. This matter should therefore be treated with utmost secrecy and urgency.

Best Regards,


Anti-fraud resources: