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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, 18 Oct 2022 16:24:10 +0000

This email may come as a surprise to you. I want you to forgive me for
sending this email without your permission. I am writing this letter
with confidence, believing that if it is God's will for you to help me
and my family, Almighty God will bless you and reward you abundantly. I
need a reliable and trustworthy person like you to trust this huge
transfer project.

My name is Mr. Ryan Williams, Branch Manager of a Financial Institution
here in USA. I got your contact through a reliable source. I am writing
to request your assistance in transferring US$14,500,000.00. This fund
is in excess of what my branch attained last year (Financial Year 2021).
I have already sent an annual report for this year on December 24th to
my headquarters, as I have observed with great interest that they will
never know of this excess background. Since then, there will be that
$14,500,000.00 amount in an escrow account with no beneficiary
(Anonymous) to avoid tracking.

As a bank employee, I cannot be directly connected to this money.
Therefore, I am obliged to request your assistance to receive this money
in your bank account in my name. 40% of that money will go to you as a
foreigner, not private and 60% from an offshore account, for me. I need
to emphasize that there is no risk at all. It will be a bank to bank
transfer OR online transfer. All I need from you is to be the depositor
of this fund,hence it is anonymous so that the fund can be transferred
to your account. I will give you all necessary information about the
funds, and I will also workout the possibility of fixing your details as
the beneficiary owner for easy transfer to you.

If you accept this offer, please reply to me. This is the only reason I
contacted you, I am willing to make an investment in partnership with
you because of yours, so if you are interested in helping in this
endeavor, please contact me for a brief discussion on how to continue.

Best regards,
Ryan Williams

Anti-fraud resources: