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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: (sent from abused email account)
Date: Tue, 28 Oct 2008 04:20:16 +0530 (IST)

I have a new email address!You can now email me at:

- FEDERAL MINISTRY OF FINANCE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF BENIN HEAD OFFICE: NO. 140 ALINO AZIKIWE WAY ASOKORO, FEDERAL CAPITAL TERRITORY, BENIN, COTONOU. BRANCH OFFICE: NO.101 ADELOA ODEKU STREET VICTORIA ISLAND, PORTO-NOVO, BENIN. Attn: Your are urgently informed that your funds ($1.5Million) has been 17/10/08 transferred to your designated account following the order of Hon. Minister of Finance Federal Republic of Benin. Please you are advised to contact Dr. Ali Modu Sheriff, the Director Due Process Unit for your Transfer Tracer and Funds Release Order Documents. His phone is +22998688340 and E-mail: ( Don't fail to reach him immediately for your Transfer Tracer to be sent to you if you go to your bank and still could not confirm the funds in your bank account. Yours Faithfully, Mr. George Hunter National Coordinator Foreign Payment.

Anti-fraud resources: