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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: Gretchen Mishra <>
Reply-To: Gretchen Mishra <>
Date: Fri, 19 Dec 2014 22:27:21 +0900 (JST)
Subject: Dearest in Christ.

Dearest in Christ.
I am Mrs.Gretchen Mishra from Switzerland. I am married to late Mr.Tom Mishra who worked with a construction company we were married but without any children am a dying woman who had decided to donate what I have to you for the up keeping of the orphan and the less-privilege’s have ($4,500,000.00) to donate for the work of charity if you are interested contact me so that i can direct you I hope you act sincerely. Lastly, I honestly pray that this money when transferred will be used for the said purpose even though I’m late then.
Mrs.Gretchen Mishra

Anti-fraud resources: