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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 Moses" <>
Date: Sun, 6 Apr 2014 15:11:18 -0400
Subject: Your Payment Via Western Union.


We have concluded every arrangement yesterday with the Governor of Central
Banque Du Benin here in Benin Republic that you should start receiving
your payment of USD 1.2 Million Dollars through Western Union Money
Transfer tomorrow but you will be receiving $5,000 USD only per a day, so
you are advice to contact the Western Union Operator Mrs. Mary Raymond
right now contact her via email and re-confirm your information to her
right away so that she can send you the Money Control Number of your first
payment of USD $5,000.00 for you to pick it up in any Western Union near

Contact Person: Mrs. Mary Raymond
Tel: +229-9483-5508

Please Provide Your Personal Details to her, to enable her proceed with
your transaction

Full Name:


Mr. Paul Moses.

Anti-fraud resources: