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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:

Date: Thu, 24 Jan 2013 04:50:06 -0500
Subject: Greetings

=C2=A0 I am a banker with Bank of China. I have an interesting business
proposal for you that will be of immense benefit to both of us. Although
this may be hard for you to believe, we stand to gain eleven million five
hundred thousand united state dollars between us in a matter of days.
Please grant me the benefit of doubt and hear me out. I need you to signify
your interest by replying to this email.
=C2=A0Most importantly, I will need you to promise to keep whatever you lea=
from me between us even if you decide not to go along with me. I will make
more details available to you on receipt of a positive response from you.
Do contact me only at my private email address:
Warm regard.

Anti-fraud resources: