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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: "Timothy Jones" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Fri, 21 Jul 2017 17:39:51 -0700
Subject: GET BACK..

I write to you in good faith and trust that you will take a moment to consider this brief email. I'm a Senior Auditor of the First National Bank of South Africa (FNB). In the course of my Job I discovered a dormant bank account which was opened in 1999 by a foreign Miner who died in a ghastly motor accident in 2001. Without much ado I humbly seek your permission to use you as the next of kin and beneficiary of the deceased estate.

Should you wish to cooperate with me I will send you a detailed email of this transaction.

I look forward to hearing from you.


Tim Jones.


TEL: +27 78 1738498

Anti-fraud resources: