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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: "FTim Bryant" <>
Date: Fri, 17 Aug 2018 03:00:08 -0700
Subject: Credit Advice

I wish to notify you that your Email address appeared in the codicil and last statement of the deceased Engr. Jose and you are entitled to his U$5.5 Million Dollars. Reply immediately because the bank is waiting for you to show up and claim the funds as they have mandated me to provide the next of kin to the fund.

Yours Faithfully,
Tim Bryant

Anti-fraud resources: