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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: Compaore Grace <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Mon, 23 Feb 2009 19:14:04 +0000
Subject: Looking forward to hearing from you

Attention please,

I am Mrs Grace Compaore the bank manager of BANK OF AFRICA (BOA) BURKINA

I am contacting you based on Trust and confidentiality that you will keep
this as top secret and don't be scared or surprised, i am the manager of
BANK OF AFRICA and i have an opportunity to transfer sum of US$10.5MILLION (TEN
MILLION FIVE HUNDRED UNITED STATE DOLLARS) I have the courage to look for a
reliable and Honest Person who will be capable for this important business
Transaction, believing that you will never let me down either now or in Future.

The owner of this account is Mr Andreas Schrann, foreigner and he is the Manager Of
petrol chemical service, a chemical engineer by Proffession.He died with his
entire family were among the victims of December, 2003 Air-Crash.
The bank has made series of efforts to contact any of the relatives to
claim this money but without success, you can confirm through this website: and my
Investigation proved to me as well that his company does not know anything About
this account. I want to transfer this money into a safe foreign account abroad
but I Don't know any foreigner,I know that this message will come to you as
a surprise as we don't know ourselves before,but be sure that it is real And
A Genuine business. hope that you will never let me down in this transaction, at
the conclusion of this business,you will be giving 40% of the total amount, 60%
will be for me.

I look forward to your earliest reply by email for more details

Best regards,
Mrs Grace Compaore

Anti-fraud resources: