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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:

Date: Sat, 19 Aug 2006 05:55:45 -0400

We shall proceed to conclude the payment process of your lottery prize,thus
your winning money shall be confirm to you in your stipulated mode of payment
within 72 working hrs.
You are therefore required to proceed to Bruxelles Belgium as an official
appointment has been schedule for you on Friday the 25TH of AUGUST, 2006 by
10.00 A.M. to come and sign the release document and a certificate of award
shall be awarded to crown you as one of the lucky winners of the year 2006,
You are therefore required to proceed with the following.
(1) A VALID IDENTIFICATION PROOF (i.e International passport or a driver's
(2) Endeavour to send your flight schedule so that our protocol officer can pick
you from the airport to the venue of the Award ceremony.
Please note that failure to comply to this appointment date shall be made known
to this office as soon as possible, so that an alternative arrangement can be
made for you, if you cannot come in person, We shall arrange for an attorney
here in Begium, to assist you in signing the release document as well as to
collect the award certificate on your behalf, before the fund can be release to
your designated account. All rights and obligation of any client to this claim
can be denied if the release document is not signed.
We await your prompt response and acknowledgement.
Congratulations once again.

Best regards,

Anti-fraud resources: