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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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Fraud email example:

From: "Stella Haris" <> (may be fake)
Date: Wed, 14 Dec 2005 03:26:47 +0100
Subject: Urgent assistant

My Dear,

Permit me to inform you of my desire of
going into business relationship with you. I got your
name and contact from a member of this site. I prayed over it and selected your name among other names due to its esteeming
nature and the recommendations given to me as a
reputable and trust worthy person that I can do
business with and by the recommendation , I must not
hesitate to confide in you for this simple and sincere
business . I am Stella Haris, the only daughter of late
Mr and Mrs Haris. My father was a very
wealthy cocoa merchant in Free Town, the economic capital of
Sierra Leone, my father was poisoned to death by his
business associates on one of their outings on a
business trip. My mother died when I was a baby and
since then my father took me so special. Before the
death of my father on January 2005 in a private
hospital here in Free Town he secretly called me on his
bed side and told me that he has the sum of four million,two hundred thousand United State Dollars.
USD (7.300,000) left in fixed / suspense account in
one of the prime bank here in Senegal ,that he used my
name as his only daughter for the next of Kin in depositing
of the fund. He also explained to me that it was
because of his wealth that he was poisoned by his
business associates. That I should seek for a foreign
partner in a country of my choice where i will
transfer this money and use it for investment purpose.

Dear, I am honourably seeking your assistance

Anti-fraud resources: