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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: "Peter Sands" <>
Date: Thu, 31 Jul 2014 06:34:01 -0000
Subject: Hello


I wish to transfer from the United Kingdom to your country or any country
of your choice, some British Pounds Sterling (£55, 500, 000, 00 Million)
for either investment or for sharing in some agreeable ratio.

I will compensate you with 40% as Gratification while 60% will be for me
as I may still invest my share (60%) In your business/company in your
country, if you are minded to assisting, please get back to me as soon as

Yours Truly.
Peter Alexander Sands.
Group Chief Executive.
Standard Chartered PLC.

Anti-fraud resources: