fighting spam and scams on the Internet
Try our spam filter!
Free trial for 30 days

About Us

"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.

Click here to report a problem with this page.



Fraud email example:

From: "Janet N" <>
Date: Wed, 28 Sep 2005 14:25:57 +0000
Subject: Hello

Dear friend,


I am contacting you to seek your assistance for a business proposal that
will be of mutual benefit to both of us.

My husband was murdered by the Dictator President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe
who is the current President of my country Zimbabwe. I and my family escaped
and fled the country to a neighbouring country South Africa where we are
currently residing on exile.

Before the death of my husband he transferred a huge sum of money to Europe
through a Security firm, and the funds are still in custody of this security
firm in Europe.

I have been trying to fly to Europe but it has been difficult for me to get
a visa from Africa. So I want you to help me make claims of this fund ($16
Million dollars) in Europe as my beneficiary and transfer the money to your
account or any account of your choice before I can get a visa to fly down to
meet with you so that we can share this money.

I have agreed to give you 10%, which would be ($1.6Million dollars) of this
Money for your assistance, and 87% would be mine and the other 3% would be
set aside for any expenses that we may incure during the course of this
transaction. My 87% would be invested in your country in any profitable
business proposed by you. I will give part of my share of the fund to
charity organisations in your country and also in my country too.

We have never met, but I want to trust you and please do not let me down
when this fund finally gets into your account. Please if you are interested,
get to me through the email address below to enable me feed you with more
details and all necessary documentations.

Please treat this as confidential.

Best regards,

Mrs Janet


Anti-fraud resources: