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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_fofana mrs_fofana" <>
Date: Sun, 23 Jul 2006 16:02:21 +0200

Fofano Fortunes
From: "fofana shara" Emai;
I am Mrs. Sarah Fofana, an Ivorien widow with an only son Ibrahim Fofana.  My husband was the chief security officer to the ousted President Henry DEBIE of Cote d'voire.  During the overthrow of 24th December 1999, my husband was among the people that were killed by the military.
Sir, may I introduce this business proposal to you with reference to an introduction and good recommendation made of you and your esteemed firm by a renowned business consultant, ELDER MARK KOFFI here in South Africa
Though due to the confidential nature of the business, I did not intimate him fully why I needed a foreigner to transact some business with. I do hereby wish to ask for your assistance in an urgent business transaction that requires absolute honesty and secrecy.
Although I did not in any way disclose to my friend the details of this my proposal due to confidential nature of this transaction.  By virtue of my husband's position, the former President (BEDIE) gave him US Dollars (forty-five million US dollars) cash in US $100 dollar bills stacked in a box when he got information that the military were planning to overthrow him.
Immediately my husband was confirmed dead, I made away with this box with my only son so that we cannot be reached by Mr. BEDIE. I have really been waiting for a more suitable time and opportunity to contact you concerning this transaction. 
Right now, the money is in a safe place, I deposited it with a security company for safe keeping. I am using this opportunity to seek for your assistance to move this money to your country, to be invested on behalf of my only son. 
For this business to be concluded immediately, all you need to do is to arrange to meet with me and my son where this box is been lodged, open an account in your name, pay in the whole money after clearing and transferring it to your chosen account. 
We can't do that on our own because we don't have account elsewhere.  Moreover, we don't have any business to cover-up, that is why we needed your assistance.  I am ready to offer you 30% of the total sum and give you the full power to manage the remaining 70% on behalf of my son.
Contact my son IBRAHIM FOFANA where we are currently staying in a sister's house in South Africa.  This money was deposited  in a security company in South Africa. Upon conclusion of arrangement, we shall forward to  you the certificate of deposit, and the phone and fax numbers of the security company for confirmation. 
However, call my son at this number (+0027-734 089 123) immediately you receive this e-mail message or through his e-mail address. 
Please, I want us to finish this business as quickly as possible. 
Yours faithfully
MRS. Sarah Fofana. 
For the family.

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