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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: Mrs Isabelle M James <>
Reply-To: "" <>
Date: Tue, 14 Jul 2020 04:21:12 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: CHARITY DONATION/INVESTMENT Dearest Beloved,My name is Mrs Isabelle
M James, I am Canadian,married to Late Dr.Thomas James,We were married for
32 years without a child.My late husband was a businessman and Gold
merchant but he was poisoned by his business partners.And Recently, My
Doctor told me that I will undergo a Surgery (Cancer of the lung) and I may
not survive it or live longer than required due to my health condition.I
inherited a total sum of $15.2M from my late husband, he deposited the


Anti-fraud resources: