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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: "Nigerian Police Force" <>
Date: Tue, 23 Mar 2010 14:10:11 -0000 (UTC)

Our Ref: NPF-05X 01
Your Ref: CPNPF-12-00
Date: 23-03-10


Reference to our circular issued to various foreign contractors and
inheritance beneficiaries; from the statistics gathered from our
preliminary investigations carried out by this unit, it has finally come
to our knowledge that there has been a lot of corruption and malpractice
going on in different government agencies and parastatals here in Nigeria.
We have been able to know our individual digital line microelectronic
surveillance that certain foreign Tel-fax lines have been constantly in
connection with unidentified lines in our international exchange
facilities and yours is a case at print. It has equally come to our
knowledge that some corrupt individuals of our country Nigeria are
defrauding the public via the aid of foreigners pretending to be
contractors and lottery winners of this government.

This is the primary reason why the Federal Ministry of Justice has enacted
decree 21-section (406) paragraph (2) of (1987). We have never stopped
wondering why you have not been able to secure your Inheritance settlement
considering your regular telephone relationship with Nigeria. We have
every reason to suspect anyone as such ghost contractors, next of kin,
lottery winners who in collaboration with unscrupulous officials of our
diseased parastatals and corporations to defraud the government. This is a
pure criminal offence as stated in contract decree of 1979 as amended by
the contract law of 1989 section 199, edict 244, paragraph 14, and
sub-section 55 of the criminal code popularly known as Advance Fee Fraud

Furthermore, in the light of these undesirable improprieties, we are
convinced beyond all reasonable doubt that you are the rightful
beneficiary of the said Inheritance amount of fund as witnessed in your
inheritance file and our pre-remittance verification of your claims. The
Kentish Branch of the HSBC London has been empowered to transfer your
money to you. Mr. Kelvin Lambert Tel: 44 709 298 2501 Fax: 44 709 298
2500, Audit Director is in charge of your payment. The HSBC is the only
bank that the Central Bank of West African States has given the power to
cancel, suspend and effect transfer of your Lottery, inheritance next of
Kin fund to you.

In summary, we strongly warn you to stop further correspondence with any
other bank otherwise you will have to blame yourself if you are scammed.
We solicit your co-operation to enable us serve you better and to bring
these culprits to order and maintain justice.

The police is your friend.

Mr. Tanko Abdulahi
For: Inspector General of Police
Interpol Division
Zone 4 Abuja Nigeria.

Anti-fraud resources: