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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: "kra ankra" <>
Date: Mon, 7 Jul 2008 22:18:28 +0000
Subject: Ms Maria Kuan

Dearest ,
I am Ms Maria Kuan an Ivoirieen citizen,I know it is normal and natural for
you to wonder why I contacted you for assistance in this transaction when we
have not met each other before,

I am pleading that you be patient with me because I have no choice than
to do what I am doing now since it is the only way out of this problem I
found myself based on the fact that most times in life, One must confide in
another Person to survive,

I therefore decided to contact you to find a solution to my problem
irrespective of the fact that we never know each other, please do not
misunderstand me since a journey of hundred miles starts with a step, I am
therefore begging you to accept me with an open heart and mind, it is the
situation I found myself that made me to contact you and ask for your

I am contacting you to assist me transfer the Sum of US$6,500.000.00 of my
Late Father onward transfer to his business associate account overseas,money
was made from the sale of Gold Business for investment in your Country under
your Management while I continue my education because my education stopped
abruptly due to the death of my Father. My mother died after giving birth to
me, so I never know my mother.

Many thanks to you if you can help me as I would compensate you with a good
percentage of the money which is negotiable after the money has been
successfully transferred and confirmed into your account.

Thank you as I await your urgent response for more details:

Yours Sincerely
Maria Kuan

Anti-fraud resources: