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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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Fraud email example:

From: "Dick Robert Moffat" <> (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 22 May 2005 17:32:49 +0200
Subject: A help

Good Day Sir/Madam,
It is my pleasure reaching you through this means, I
am in need of a trust
worthy foreign person that can assist me have my
fund(s) worth 8Million
English Pounds Stirling transferred out of the non
operational bank account
that my late Uncle, Chief. David J Moffat deposited
in ireland, for it is
very difficult for me to received such fund for I am
the next of kin and due
to I being a refugee here, I urgently need your help
in this case. Please if
you are willing to assist me, do send me your contact
telephone numbers,
full names, so that I can present you to the bankers
at ireland where the
fund is deposited, for the bankers in ireland to
contact you, as you as my
foreign family partner that I need my fund(s) to be
transferred to your account, If you do care to help my mail box : <>

Yours faithfully,
David J Moffat.

Anti-fraud resources: