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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: "Mrs Joyce Tangro" <>
Date: Tue, 3 Jul 2012 05:55:26 +0430
Subject: Waiting for your urgent response

Accra-Ghana,West Africa


My name is Mrs. JOYCE Tangro  the wife of Tom Tangro from Zimbabwe. This might be a surprise to you about where I got your contact address, I got your address from the South African Network Online {SAINO} when I was desperately looking for a trust-worthy person to assist my son who is currently residing in Accra-Ghana in West Africa, and so I decided to contact you.  During the current war against the farmers in Zimbabwe from the supporters of our President Robert Mugabe to claim all the white-owned farms to his party members and his followers, he ordered all the white farmers to surrender their farms to his party members. My husband was one of the best farmers in our country and because he did not support Mugabe’s ideas, Mugabe’s supporters invaded my husband farm and burnt everything in the farm, killing my husband and made away with a lot of items in my husband farm. 

Before his death, my husband had deposited with one of the Security Company in Accra-Ghana, West Africa the sum of (US$ 10.5 Million United States Dollars). After the death of my husband, my son {JOHN} decided to move out of my country to Republic of Ghana where my husband had deposited the money with the Security Company as valuables.  Please why I am contacting you is to assist my son to move this money out of Accra-Ghana because as an asylum seeker he is not allowed to operate any Bank Account or assured of security our investment within in the country. 

We have agreed to offer you 30% of the total sum for your assistance and 5% for any expenses incurred during the transaction while 65% will be for me and my family, which I believe that with your help we will invest it in your country. All I want you to do is to furnish me with your private phone and fax numbers for easy communication.

Waiting for your urgent response.

 Best Regards.

Mrs.JOYCE Tangro

For the Family

Anti-fraud resources: