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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: "John Wan" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Thu, 8 Oct 2015 01:01:34 -0400
Subject: Urgent Response

Dear friend,

I am John Wan from the bank of China, I have a business proposal involving the sum of $8,370,000.00 which is unclaimed as the deceased depositor died in testate with no surviving next of kin. I will like you to work with me in total trust and partnership to enable me transfer the estate to you.

We will share the estate in the ratio 50% each. I advise that you keep this email confidential and respond to me via my private email address:
I shall await your swift response to enable me inform you in details about this business.


John Wan

Anti-fraud resources: