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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: laure <>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2011 08:55:00 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: complements friend,

complements friend,
I am Mr.FERNAND LAURE, the relative of the finance Minister of Cote D'ivoire. I am writing to you in respect of $18.4 million usd in a foreign account belonging to Mr. Gbagbo and the Finance Minister of Cote D'ivoire ,the president of Cote D'ivoire due to the present condition in Cote D'ivoire, they bank this money in my name before the problem so I want you to come for this fund as the beneficiary.
Send me these information
1.Your full Name:
2.Your Home Address
4.Mobile Number
Your urgent mail will be highly appreciated

Anti-fraud resources: