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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: "Mrs. Mariam Benson." (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sun, 27 Dec 2009 12:10:58 +0100

You won the sum of $350,000.00 UNITED STATES DOLLARS from our yearly sweepstakes 2009.Your email address was among the five lucky winner in our computer email ballot,You are hereby advice to contact Mr. John Eddy to claim your prize.CONTACT PERSON: MR. JOHN EDDY E-MAIL ADDRESS: ( ) TEL: 011-234-805-996-9221 CLAIMS PROCESSING REQUIREMENT DATA:(1) Full Names: ________(2) Sex: _______(3) Age: _______(4) Country:______ (5) Mobile Phone: _____ Note: the only money you will send to Mr. John Eddy to deliver your Consignment direct to your postal Address in your country is just ($200 .00 USD)only being Security Keeping Fee of the Courier Company so far. Sincerely,Mrs. Mariam Benson.

Anti-fraud resources: