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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: "Sanusi Lamido Sanusi" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 23 Apr 2011 15:30:09 +0430

Central Bank of Nigeria,
Central Business District,
Cadastral Zone, Abuja, Federal
Capital Territory, Nigeria.
Attention:Fund Beneficiary,
>From the records of outstanding contractors due for payment with the federal government of Nigeria your name and company was discovered as next on the list of the outstanding contractors who have not received their payments.
I wish to inform you that your payment is being processed and will be released to you as soon as you respond to this letter. Also note that from my record in my file your outstanding contract payment is us$32.7 million dollars(Thirty Two million seven hundred thousand united states dollars).
Please re-confirm to me if this is Online with what you have in your record and also re-confirm to me the followings:
1) Your full name.
2) Phone, fax and mobile
3) company name,position and address.
4) Profession,age marital status
5) Scanned copy of int'l passport.
As soon as this information are received, your payment will be made to you in a certified bank draft from central bank of Nigeria and a copy will be given to you for you to take to your bank and confirm it for withdrawals.
Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi
Executive Governor
Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)

Anti-fraud resources: