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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: "Miss Pauline William" <> (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 29 Oct 2006 00:21:31 +0200
Subject: Please be of help

Hello my dear,
How are you and your family ? hope fine, my Dear I am writting this letter with due respect and heartful of tears since we have not known or met ourselves previously. I am asking for your assistance . I will be so glad if you can allow and lead me to the right channel towards your assistance to my situation now. I will make my proposal well known if I am given the opportunity. I would like to use this opportunity to introduce myself to you. ,
I am Pauline 25 years old girl and I know that this proposal might be a surprise to you .In regards , My late father Dr Dion William ,was the personal advicer to the former head of state in my country Liberia in west africa. But he was killed along side with my mother during the long civil war and all his properties was totally destroyed. However, after their death I managed to escape with a very important document which worthy the sum of (US$6.5m) Six million Five hundred thousand U.S Dollars deposited by my late father in a BANK) .
Meanwhile,i am saddled with the problem of securing a trust worthy foriegn person will help me transfer the money over to his country and into his acoount pending my arrival to meet with him. Furthermore,you can contact the BANK for confirmation and i will issue a letter of nomination on your name,that will enable the BANK to deal with you on my behalf.I am giving you this offers as mentioned with every confidence on your acceptance to assist me or take me as your daugther and manage the money., your urgent reply will be highly appreciated.
Miss Pauline William

Anti-fraud resources: