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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: "DR WILLIAM SMITH" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 5 Sep 2009 06:37:13 +0100

Dear friend
This is good news for you about your long awaited fund,the fund $4.2 million us
dollar was deposted yesterday by 2:45 p.m at D.H.L COURIER COMPANY, the depositor is mr william
smith,the cash was packaged in a small box and the registration number is xqd7819-sc,therefore
contact the courier company by reconfirming your right info to them. such as your name,your
personel phone number,and your house address,the courier contact person is mr lewis kennedy
as the director incharge of delivering unit E-maill address......(
COMPANY E-MAIL..( all the fee and the four prove documents
has been handed over to the company director.the only money you will send to the company is daily
security keeping fee of $34.00 per day,therefore contact them immediately.
good luck
regard william smith

Anti-fraud resources: