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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: "Alice Rupert" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Mon, 7 Feb 2011 08:15:19 -0500
Subject: With regards,

Good day,

My names are Alice Rupert; I am a Security Manager, with International Finance Corporation.

I am writing to discuss an opportunity that we can take advantage of; it involves a client who died four years ago and the circumstances surrounding the investments made by this client at "IFC Group", the Private Banking arm of World Bank.

Your name: and email contact matches the client profile making you a potential beneficiary; contact me via my private email:

I intend to discuss how we can exploit the opportunity. I guarantee that this will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the law. The accrued benefit will be shared 50% for me and 50% for you.


Alice Rupert.

Anti-fraud resources: