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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: Florence Ike <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 26 May 2012 11:05:57 +0000
Subject: From Western Union Money Transfer

>From Western Union Money Transfer
Attention To You Personally

I have contacted you because we have sent you the first transfer of $5,000 from your winning funds valued $1,200,000 USD, Therefore you are to contact agent Mr David Joseph of western union to give you the transfer payment information and MTCN.

Again you are advised to reconfirm to him your full contact details such as follows:

Receiver's name: ___________
Receiver's Address: ____________
Mobile or House phone: _______________
Personal Identity: ________________(Optional)

Contact Person: Mr David Joseph,
TEL: +229 98973315

Please try to contact him today for him to forward the MTCN information to you, indicate the registration code of EB/WDB/IMF-9991 to him, when contacting him. He will be sending you $5,000 daily as per official direction to him. Do get in touch with me once you have got the


Mrs. Florence Ike
For Western Union Money Transfer.

Anti-fraud resources: