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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: Kojo Michael <>
Date: Wed, 23 Jan 2008 07:05:52 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Desired Attention

Good Day

With all humility and respect I greet you! Please I do not intend to make you uncomfortable with this proposal but rather present to you a life time opportunity of a huge financial deal that will benefit both parties greatly. Straight to the purpose of this mail.

I am Kojo Machael an account supervisor here in the Commercial Bank of Ghana. In 2006 a Foreign Oil and Gas merchant client/customer to the bank working at the Ghana Petroleum Co-operation made a Fixed Deposit for twelve calendar months valued at ₤30 Million British Pounds in my branch. Upon maturity I sent a routine notification to his forwarding address but got no reply.
After a month I sent a reminder to his resident address but no reply. On further investigation I confirmed from his co-employers at the Ghana Petroleum Co-operation that he was involved in the oil explosion which took place at the Tema Refinery. Meanwhile when he made the deposit in branch here he did not declare any kin or relations on his official documents including his Bank Deposit paper work in my Branch. However this sum of ₤30 Million British Pounds is deposited in Escrow Fixed Pounds Account here in my branch. As the account officer I'm the only one who has information about the deposit and according to Ghana law at the expiration of 5 five years if no one applies for the claims of the fund the money will revert to the ownership of the Ghana Government.

Consequently I seek your consent to present you as a foreigner to stand in as the rightful owner next of kin or business partner to our late client so you can claim the money with the help of my attorney. This is simple. I would like you to provide me your Full names contact address well as your direct telephone number so that I can put in Bank Computer Data to prove you as the rightful beneficiary/next of kin to our late client who made the deposit.

The money will be transferred to your nominated bank account in your country and we share in the ratio of 50% for me and 40% for you 10% to pay off any expense we might incur. There is no risk at all as all internal documentation will manager and retrieve by me and this will guarantee the successful execution of this transaction on your behalf please reply immediately via my email address. Upon your response I will then provide you with more details and relevant documents that will help you understand the transaction and swing into the necessary action while I confide in you hoping you will not betray me at Last.

Best Regards
Kojo Michael

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