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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: "Rick E. Towers" <>
Date: Wed, 16 Jan 2013 08:34:50 -0300 (CLST)
Subject: Claim Your Prize Reward of $2,500,000.00 !!!

*Ref Number:NL/CAT01-2013

Dear Internet Subscriber,

We are pleased to inform you that your email address associated with
E-ticket Number: ERP-A018815 has won you the star prize of $2,500,000.00
USD (Two Million,Five Hundred Thousand Dollars).

This is a reward program for the patronage of Internet services and all
email addresses entered for the promotional draws were randomly selected
from an internet resource database of registered software and domain
users. This promotional draw is conducted in the Netherlands, but email
entries were drawn on a global basis.

For instructions to receive this prize, contact our claims officer using
details stated below:

Name: Albert Cuyper
Tel: +31 647 580 997

Kindly provide him with the following information; Name, Address,
Phone/Fax,Cell Phone,Email,Alternative Email,Age, Occupation, Ref Number
and Eticket Number.

Rick E. Towers,
Promotions Coordinator.

Anti-fraud resources: