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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: Western Union Money Transfer <>
Date: Sun, 02 May 2010 19:15:10 +0100

I wish to inform you that We have sent 5000.00 USD already, that was given to you by the United Nations,(ECOWAS) as we are mandated to send you the total sum of 300,000USD through Western Union. send name, address, phone number.we have Process your first payment of $ 5,000 collect / Sender: Antony Clay MTCN 7724400166, you can track at before going to pick to it up, United Nations and (ECOWAS) are supporting individial due to the worldwide economy meltdown, your email was luckly picked among 100other people.

Regards Mr. Ken Derrick
Phone: +234-805 731 2093

Anti-fraud resources: