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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.Marco Williams Esq" <>
Date: Thu, 25 Sep 2014 14:52:23 -0700

Hello Dear,

Muammar Gaddafi and family.

My Names are Marco Williams, international financial
consultant/attorney.One of my clients Muammar Gaddafi`S family (Former
Libya President) has mandated me to look for a genuine honest person whom
some of their funds will be entrusted to for safekeeping/investments due
to their current situation in Libya
right now. If you are the honest person, kindly write me through this
email address: if interest so I can give you further
directives on how to get hold of the investment funds of the family. the
total amount is $48million Dollas and you will get 20% for helping.

Looking forward to hear from you

Honorably Yours,
Mr.Marco Williams Esq.

Anti-fraud resources: