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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: "Johnson Andrew" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2010 08:14:30 -0800
Subject: AFOB - TIME ALERT...2010 ..ASAP..LYNN

Good day,

I am the manager with the African Development Bank.I noticed that you are yet to provide your details for the Remittance of your usd500,000 which you won as our 100,000th customer for the month of July, by buying a product made in Africa or transacting in an African related business, in our "Support Development in Africa" splash.I am assuming you do not have an African domiciled account and cannot afford the transfer fees; if this is the case, I have a proposition for you, as the funds are irredeemable after 16 weeks.I look forward to your response.

Johnson Andrew
Corporate Public Manager
African Development Bank

Anti-fraud resources: