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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. Debra Price" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sun, 29 Aug 2010 00:00:50 +0200
Subject: Your $500,000 Compensation Fund

Dear Friend,

your email/name just like mine is on the scam victims compensation list put together by the Nigeria Government Scam Victims Reconciliation Commission. I have fallen for various Scams in the past and with this compensation exercise, I have been able to bounce back to my feet. Right now I am the happiest person on earth because I have just received my own $500,000 compensation money and unlike the over $4,000 I spent dealing with wrong and fraudulent offices in the past, I spent only $205 for the paper work. This is all it will cost you to get your own money, take note of this. I will advise you to contact Rev. Father Peter Clever. He is so kind and knows just how to set things right. He works with the commission and is in charge of the on going compensation exercise. He has been trying to get in touch with you and has asked that I try to do the same when I get back to the States and I am doing just that. His email address is

Mrs. Debra Price.

Anti-fraud resources: