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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. James W. Fransworth" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Fri, 19 Sep 2014 00:52:13 -0700
Subject: Confidential Business Deal!!!

Dear Intending Partner
Good day, My name is  Mr. James W. Fransworth, working as a Cobalt's Chief Exploration Officer for Sonangol Limited, I am please to contact you on a possible business deal to transfer an Oil Lifting License to your name.
I am contacting you after my recent search for a trusted business partner on a crude oil trading investment deal. If you are interested, send your full names, Adddress, Age, Occupation and telephone/fax numbers to my private email for further business communication on how we can execute a successful business deal.
Thank you and God Bless,
Yours sincerely,
Mr. James W. Fransworth
CIE Angola Block 21 Ltd., Sonangol,

Anti-fraud resources: