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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: Patrick Bouabre <>
Date: Sat, 14 Dec 2013 15:55:30 +0800
Subject: From Patrick Bouabre

Dear Friend,

I am Patrick Bouabre.I want to invest in your country this Seventeen
Million Five Hundred Thousand US dollars left in a fixed/suspense
Account in one of the Prime banks here by my late father. According to
the bank i am the only person that can direct them on where and when
to make the transfer.

I am looking for a God fearing person to help me.I want to transfer
this money and use it for investment purpose such as Real Estate
management.I am honorably seeking your assistance in the following ways:
1) To serve as a guardian
2) To make arrangement for me to come over to your country to further
my education.
3) To help me invest the money in a profitable ventures.

I am only 20years old and I am prepared to give you 30% percent of the
total amount, as commission for assisting me and 5% for expenses that
will be incurred.

Best Regards

Patrick Bouabre

Anti-fraud resources: