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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: "Pastor Paul Harry" <>
Date: Fri, 10 Nov 2017 18:11:30 +0100
Subject: Re: Re; Your Payment Notice.

Hello My Dear,

I am indeed glad to be in contact with you even though this medium of communication (internet) has been grossly abused by criminal minded people making it difficult for people with genuine intention struggle to correspond and exchange views without skepticism.

This is to inform you based on the present anti-fraud/scam war that is correctly going on globally in Africa, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS ) Anti-Fraud Teams in conjuction with World Bank are making sure that Financial Fraud is Completely wiped out from Africa and beyond as they are working to restrict cyber-crime.

In this regard, about Eighty-Six (86) banks and government officials have been arrested across Africa since this year who tried to divert peoples funds for their personal use. The Commission have recovered the total sum of US$ 2.1 Billion dollars from these scammers both cash and assets confirmed to have come from their victims in Europe, Asia and Americans who have lost their money trying to do business in Africa and some lost their inherited funds of cheque and ATM CARD payment.

Thousands of email addresses with names in concluding yours where found in there address books. It is at this juncture the Commission decided to compensate you people as the beneficiary of 2017 batch "A."

NOTE: You are now to receive $1,200,000.00 dollars by cash or wired bank transfer. So I HEREBY ADVISED you to Disassociate Yourself from any form of Communication with Individuals, Banks, cor-operate bodies and Government Officials if happen you already in contact with any one and Follow my Guidelines to receive your payment without delay or hinderance.

Yours Belove,
Pastor Paul Harry
C/100, Godomey, Cotonou
Republic of Benin

Anti-fraud resources: