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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, 26 Sep 2006 14:34:51 +0100
Subject: =?iso-8859-1?Q?=20=20INVESTMENT?=


Please accept my sincere apologizes if my email does not meet your business
or personal ethics,I will first introduce myself as MR DANIEL WEST,a staff
in the Private Clients Section of a well-known bank,here in Cotonou, Benin
One of our accounts, with holding balance of (US18million ) has been dormant
and last operated four years ago, From my investigations and confirmation,
the owner of the said account, a foreigner by name John Shumejda died on
the 4th of January 2002 in a plane crash in Birmingham. you can view this
CNN website

Since then, nobody has done anything as regards the claiming of this money,
as he has no family member that has any knowledge as to the existence of
either the account or the funds; and also Information from the National
Immigration also states that he was single on entry into the Benin Rep.

I have confidently discussed this issue with some of the bank officials
and we have agreed to find a reliable foreign partner to deal with. We therefore
propose to do business with you, standing in as the next of kin of these
funds from the deceased and funds released to you after necessary processes
have been followed.
This transaction is totally free of risk and troubles as the fund is legitimate
and does not originate from drug, money laundry, terrorism or any other
illegal act. On your interest, let me hear from you.

This message contains confidential information and is intended only for

specified addressee. If you are not the named addressee you should not
disseminate, distribute or copy this e-mail.The sender therefore does
not accept liability for any errors or omissions in the contents of this

message,which arise as a result of e-mail transmission. Please note
that we reserve the right to monitor and read any emails sent and received

under the telecommunications (Lawful Business Practice)(Interception of

Communications) Regulations 2000

Anti-fraud resources: