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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: "mike amazulu" <>
Date: Thu, 22 May 2014 06:59:44 +1000 (EST)
Subject: investment

FROM Mike Amazulu
I am Mr. MIKE AMAZULU a senior Auditing Officer with the FRIST National
BANK in South Africa
I have a Business Proposal of $5 million for you to handle
with me from my bank. I will need you
to assist me in executing this Business Project from South Africa to your
country. If interested, please reply to this email: with
your full Contact Details
TEL: +27784807066

Anti-fraud resources: