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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: Brent Smith <>
Date: Fri, 15 Oct 2010 18:03:21 +0800


I have been waiting for you to pick up your Cashier Check of $800,000.00 USD
(EIGHT HUNDRED THOUSAND US DOLLARS) before I leave the Federal Republic of
Nigeria, but you did not show up as I did not hear from you. I am writing to
inform you that I have deposited your cashier check with UNITED PARCEL SERVICE
there in Nigeria.

For your information, I'm now in Japan to resume my new job offer and will not
go back to Nigeria till next year. Please you have to contact the
United Parcel
Service of Nigeria to know when they will deliver your package to your
address in your country.

Note that I have paid for the security keeping fee. The only money you will
have to pay is the shipping/handling fee which only cost $80.00 US Dollars to
receive your check parcel as agreed with them.

Don't be deceived by any body because I have paid for the security keeping fee
before they accepted the Cashier check.

Please contact the company with their below details:

Name: Mary Anderson
Tel: +2348051133737

Thanks for your attention.
Brent Smith


Anti-fraud resources: