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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 Brennan." (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Wed, 3 May 2017 09:13:55 -0700
Subject: Greetings,

Good day to you my friend,

I have good news for you.

Information reaching my desk states that you have not received your long awaited beneficiary fund, however a round table meeting has just been concluded and the resolution of the meeting is to ensure that your funds can get to you today or latest this week.

Now if you truly want to claim this fee that truly belongs to you, I need you to indicate by answering the questions below and state the mode of payment you would prefer.

How much are you expecting to receive as your beneficiary fund?

How much were you asked to pay to clear your beneficiary fund?

What mode of payment do you prefer? Check, SWIFT ATM Card or Bank Transfer.

For bank transfer mode, provide the bank account details currently owned.

Reconfirm your personal information for the records viz: FULL NAME, CURRENT ADDRESS, OCCUPATION AND PHONE NUMBER)

Get back to me ASAP with the requested information above and you will be glad you did.

Best Regards,
John Brennan.

Anti-fraud resources: