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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: "Barrister William Kafa" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Fri, 3 Dec 2010 21:10:50 +0100
Subject: Awaiting your reply.

FROM THE DESK OF BARRISTER WILLIAM KAFA OCEANIC BANK OF NIGERIA PLC, LAGOS-NIGERIA BANK LAWYER . Notification of payment by Telegraphic Wire Transfer Dear Friend, We hereby officially notifying you about the present arrangement to pay you, your over due Winning Prize/inheritance fund which you could not complete the process of the released of your transfer pin code through the Digitalized Payment System. We have decided to pay your funds through (Telegraphic Wire Transfer) This arrangement was initiated/constituted by the World Bank, United Nation and Paris Club, due to fraudulent activities going on within the world. The World Bank and Paris Club introduced this payment arrangement as to enable our Contract ,Winning Prize, inheritance beneficiary to receive their fund without any interference. The Telegraphic Wire Transfer was contracted and powered by World Bank. Reconfirm the following information to us for Security reason. 1)YOUR FULL NAME: 2)YOUR RECEIVING ADDRESS: 3)YOUR TELEPHONE NUMBER: 4)YOUR PROFESSION: 5) YOUR AGE: Upon the receipt of this mail I will give you the direction on how you will write your application to the remittance department for them to proceed on the procession of your Transfer so you absolutely have nothing to worry about all we need is your Prompt Response and Co-operation by Gods Grace we will have a successful transaction. As soon as I receive your reply I will help you write an application you will have to forward to the bank for the release of your funds. CONGRATULATIONS IN ADVANCE. BEST REGARDS, BARRISTER WILLIAM KAFA. OCEANIC BANK OF NIGERIA PLC, LAGOS-NIGERIA BANK LAWYER.

Anti-fraud resources: