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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: "MR. NELSON P. MALEKI" <> (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 19 May 2005 12:03:14 -0700

TEL/FAX: +27 11 507 5085

Dear Sir/Madam,

With great pleasure I am writing this proposal on behalf of my partners. A member of our government trade delegation to your country gave your impeccable profile to me. Hence I have decided to seek your cooperation, due to the sensitivity of this transaction and my commitment as a civil servant. I am Mr. NELSON P. MALEKI. Executive Director Foreign Remittance Department in my Bank South Africa. There is an account opened in this Bank in 1994 and since late 1997 nobody has operated on this account again. After going through some old files in the records, I discovered that if I do not remit this money out urgently it would be forfeited for nothing. The owner of this account is MR CHUNG TIMOTHY AND WIFE CHUNG LYNDA, a foreigner from U.S.A, President/Ceo of Kruger Gold Co. Inc. A Miners company, A Geologist by profession and he died since 1997. He died in an air crash along with his wife in August 6th 1997 in an Korean Air Flight 801 with!
other passengers on board. You can confirm this from the website below from publisher by CNN.WEBSITEPUBLISHEDONCNN.
No other person know about this account or anything concerning it, the account has no other beneficiary and my investigation proved to me as well that his company does not know anything about his account and the amount involved is (US$ 14.7m) Fourteen Million Seven Hundred Thousand United States Dollars. I am only contacting you as a foreigner because this money cannot be approved to a local Bank here, but can only be approved to any foreign account because the money is in US Dollars and the former owner of the account is Mr. Chung Timothy is a foreigner too. Our constraint is to be able to source an honest and trustworthy individual, to whom we can remit these funds and act as trustee pending our visit or coming over, since our period of disengagement from the civil service is near.

We are presently affected by the South Africa civil service code of conduct laws that prohibits civil servants from operating private foreign accounts. I have the authority of my partners in office to propose that should you be willing to assist us in this transaction, your share as compensation will be approximately US$2.8M (20% ) while my colleagues and I receive US$11m (75%), 5% for miscellaneous expenses like the accumulated taxes and others levis.

This transaction is 100% risk free provided you treat it with utmost secrecy and confidentiality. Furthermore, your area of specialization and country is not a hindrance to the successful execution of this transaction.

Kindly contact me upon your willingness to assisting us.

Yours Faithfully,

Mr. Nelson P. Maleki

Anti-fraud resources: