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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: "Sgt. Raymond Williams" <>
Date: Wed, 10 Nov 2021 19:45:18 +0000
Subject: Dear Friend,

Dear Friend,

I am Sergeant Raymond Williams, who is presently serving with the U.S
Army unit in Al-Tanf, Syria. I am contacting you for an urgent
transaction of $5.8 Million United States Dollars. I am soliciting
your cooperation to help me receive the funds packaged in a box
through a diplomatic agent. I will compensate you with 40% of the
funds for your assistance. Kindly get back to me as soon as possible
for more details

Sgt. Raymond Williams

Anti-fraud resources: