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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: "STANDARD CHARTERED BANK" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Tue, 27 Nov 2012 23:41:05 -0000
Subject: Your immediate Authentication is needed.

Dear valued Customer,
I am James Wright (Customer Service officer) Standard Chartered Bank Ghana. We received instruction from our financial authorities here in Ghana to remit the contractual/inheritance sum of $1.9m to you. While we are processing your payment file, it was discovered that your fund beneficiary name has been changed and replaced. The new beneficiary said you are seriously ill and hospitalised that is reason you are not writing again and said you have instructed him to claim your fund and transfer it to the account provided below.
Bank Address: 2075 S. Victoria Ave Ventura, CA 93003
Bank Phone Number:   800 788-7000
Account Name: Mr. Allen Smith.
Type: Checking
ABA # 322271627
Acct # 1951204345
As a matter of the change, the bank's remittance director ordered that we stop the payment until we get a mandate from you authenticating this change. If you are aware of this development, please kindly confirm to us the name of the new beneficiary but if not please furnish us with the following information accurately to enable us verify and update our data here before subsequent processing and transfer of your fund.
Full Name:
Full Address:
Date Of Birth:
Country of residence:
Marital Status:
Company(If any):
Mobile telephone: 
Fax number: 
Alternative Email:
Home Equity (if any):
Any Valid means of Identification(scan copy):
Your identification Number:
Name of next of kin:
Address of next of  Kin:
Upon the receipt and confirmation of the aforementioned information, we shall swing into action to process and remit your fund without further delay. We appeal to you to remain calm while we do our best to make sure that your fund is transfer to you.
Your quick response to this mail will be highly appreciated and will be of advantage to the quick processing and transfer of your fund.
James Wright.
Customer Service officer.

Anti-fraud resources: