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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" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sun, 22 Aug 2010 03:57:24 +0200

We have sent 9000.00 USD already through western union, as we are mandated to
Transfer you the total sum of 300,000USD through Western Union by the
United Nations, send info, address, and phone
number. Processing your first payment of $9,000 USD. To collect / Sender:
Norbert Siegler MTCN 6493992890 and call me or email me
to send you another payment tomorrow.

Mr. Ken Texman
Phone: +234-805 309 7198

This message has been scanned for viruses and
dangerous content by MailScanner, and is
believed to be clean.

Anti-fraud resources: