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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: "Mr. John Mcfarlane" <>
Date: Sun, 10 Jan 2010 15:44:48 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: Re: My Request

From: Mr. Phillip Scott.
P O Box 10720
Victoria Street
London WC2R 1AP
Dear Friend,
                                                     Re: My Request.
My heart warm greetings to you. I am Mr. Phillip Scott. I have a very important request that made me to contact you, I decided to confide in you directly and solicit for your assistance and Guidelines in making a business investment and wire transfer the sum of £30.5M GBP(Thirty Million Five Hundred thousand British Pounds Sterling only) into your country within the Next few days. All conformable legal documents to back this payment in your name genuinely will be made available prior to your acceptance to this proposal.
I presently work as a Executive Director, and am in charge with all Offshore Mortgage & Services of our overseas brokers/investors with Royal Bank of Scotland Plc, London. But at This moment, I am constrained to issue more details about this profitable Business Investment until I get your positive response by reply email. Meanwhile, I have worked out the modalities and technicalities whereby the funds can be claimed in any of our 6 Clearing House and Finance Center without any hitches. Our sharing ratio will be 50% for me and 50% for you equally. If you are interested, send your email response and your direct mobile Telephone number so we could discuss more on phone as regards to the transaction for further details. I wish for your utmost confidentiality in handling this transaction sucessfully.
 Kindly view my identification link below and also contact me through my private email.
Awaiting your kind reply soon.
Best Regards
Mr. Phillip Scott
Executive Director, RBS

Anti-fraud resources: