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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:

Date: Tue, 10 Dec 2019 12:32:14 +0000
Subject: Hello

Dear friend,

How are you today? Hope all is well with you and your family? I hope
this mail finds you in an excellent condition of health. But if you do
not remember me, you have received an email from me in the past
regarding a multimillion dollar business proposal which we never
concluded. I am using this opportunity to inform you that this
multi-million-dollar business has been concluded with another Greek
Merchant who financed it to a logical conclusion.

I thank you for your great effort towards our unfinished transfer of
fund into your account, due to one reason or the other best known to
you at that time. Due to the effort, sincerity, courage and
trustworthiness you showed during the course of the transaction, I
want to compensate you and show my gratitude to you with the sum of
One Million Eight hundred and fifty thousand united states dollars.

I have left an international certified bank draft for you, worth about
$1,850,000.00 cashable anywhere in the world. My dear friend, please
contact my Togolese Lawyer, Mr. Mark Anderson so that he will send the
draft to you without any delay. At the moment, I'm very busy here in
Greece, trying to invest my own share of the funds with my new
partner. Please I will like you to accept this token with good faith
as this is from the bottom of my heart.

CONTACT: Mr. Mark Anderson

Therefore, you should send him your full Name, telephone number and
contact address for his reference and ask him to release the draft to
you because i have instructed him.

Thank you in anticipation for your past efforts and God bless you.

Best Regards,
Mrs. Lauren Gaton

Anti-fraud resources: