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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: Office File <>
Date: Tue, 5 Feb 2013 23:11:27 +0800 (CST)
Subject: Dear Friend


Dear Friend,
This is to inform you that your total funds has been Converted into ATM Master Card the diplomat Mr. Richard Smith is now in united states with your ATM MasterCard $1,500,000.00 to deliver to your address.
Contact the diplomat (  ) or call 2052946780 you will receive the card from the diplomat .Call the Diplomat 2052946780 you will receive the ATM Card From him he is waiting to hear from you as he is now in the united states at John F. Kennedy International Airport.
Contact the diplomat with your full name phone number and your address where he will bring your ATM card to you.
What you will do immediately you receive the card you take the card to any ATM machine and start withdrawing your money immediately. Update me once you receive the ATM Card.
Regards,Western Union Head Office.

Anti-fraud resources: