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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: "Mr Samuel Sarpong" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Fri, 5 Aug 2011 10:24:26 -0700
Subject: Security Alert From Fidelity Bank

This is to notify you that $3.5 million has been credited in your favor, so kindly contact  Mr Samuel Sarpong from FIDELITY BANK with  the following information to enable your  fund transferred via bank to bank or issuing you an ATM card, AS THE CASE MAY BE. Your full name, Age, Sex, Nationality, Direct phone number, Residential Address, Occupation.
Hope to hear from you soon.
Revert ASAP
George Dede

Anti-fraud resources: