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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: Mary Jane Zanguma <>
Date: Fri, 7 Mar 2014 16:06:35 +0100

Hello my dear,
I am Mary Jane Zanguma from Sierra-Leone married to Mr. Williams
Zanguma, he was dealing on Gold and Diamond, who died of cancer
leaving me and my only son Ken who is 7 years now, and before his
death he deposited US$10.5 Million in one of the reputable banks
which I will disclose to you once I receive your reply .

Since the death of my husband, his brothers have been seriously
chasing me around with constant threats, trying to suppress me so that
they might have the documents of his landed properties and confiscate
them. They have successfully collected all his properties, yet they
never stopped there, they told me to surrender all bank accounts of my
late husband, which I did, but I never disclose to them of this
deposit. Because my husband made the deposit in a suspense fixed
account with a clause attached to it for onward transfer into a
foreign account.

Now that the situation is becoming uncontrollable because of pressure
on me from the family members, which I will no longer like to take
more risk staying here with my only son who is just Seven year old, I
am now soliciting for your help to stand as my foreign business
partner to receive the fund into your account. You will help me to
invest the money into real estate once I come over there with my son.

So if you accept to be my partner to receive the fund in your account,
get back to me for more details. Please call me after reading:
Mary Jane Zanguma

Anti-fraud resources: