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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: "Maria Federico" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 16 May 2020 19:29:26 +0200

Dear friend, How are you? First and foremost, I apologized using this medium to reach you for a transaction of this magnitude,
but this is due to confidentiality and prompts Access reposed on this medium. It is a delight to have your esteemed contact,
can I trust you? I am sick widow, I lost my husband two years ago and ever since I have been diagnosed with cancer,
during our married life we didn't have a child, I am taking treatment in a hospital here in Doha Qatar,
I'm seeking your help I want you to help me distribute my funds to charity organizations,
I cannot do it myself because of my health condition,
Please reply if you can help me distribute my funds and I am willing to give 20% of $38.5 MILLION for your time.
Waiting for your urgent response. please reply me directly to my email address:
Mrs.Maria Federico

Anti-fraud resources: