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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: "James Gary Esq" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Fri, 5 Aug 2011 06:10:03 -0700
Subject: Attention Please.

>From The Desk of Gary Law Film.

My name is James Gary, Personal Attorney to Dr. Dave Martin. He Have one of the Biggest Contractors. who died after a brief illness here in Lome, Togo West Africa.

I need your assistance to present you for a claim of his BEQUEST valued $30.500 (Thirty Million Five Hundred Thousand U.S. Dollars), which he instructed to be DONATED to CHARITY.

This Fund would be shared equally between us if this proposition is acceptable by you. I shall perfect all the legal documentations to bearing your names as the Next of Kin of the Fund.

Get back to me if only you are interested if not don’t reply.

With Kind Regards.

James Gary (Esq.)

Anti-fraud resources: