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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 Douglas Williams <>
Reply-To: Mr Douglas Williams <>
Date: Wed, 8 Oct 2014 06:40:50 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Yours sincerely Mrs.Mary Jeffrey

 We have finally concluded to effect your total payment of (950,000 US) via
western union office this morning as the best and easier way to cash your fund
in any nearest western union office in your city.

based on our agreement with the director of western union transfer Mr. Douglas
Williams , Your transfer will commence immediately you contact him,

contact him now with your information as stated below but make sure you call
him after filling in your information as to beware of your email because he is
always busy working hard to see that beneficiaries receives their funds.

Your Name__________
Your Home Address________
Your Direct Phone Number__________
Your Copy of Id Card_____________
Your occupation______________

Western Union Office: Contact person: Douglas Williams E-mail: Phone No:+229 99303962 Your fund amount deposited is

Yours sincerely Mrs.Mary Jeffrey

Anti-fraud resources: