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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: Mr Daniel Williams <>
Date: Thu, 31 Jul 2014 17:38:47 +0200
Subject: From Mr Daniel Williams

From Mr Daniel Williams

Hello Dear,
I am contacting you in regards to a business transfer of a large sum
of money from a dormant account. Though I know that a transaction of
this magnitude will make any one apprehensive and worried, but I am
assuring you that all will be well at the end of the day

I discovered an abandoned sum of US$16,000, 000.00 (Sixteen Million US
Dollars) in an account that belongs to one of our foreign Customers
late George Brumley. This very account has been dormant for some years
now. After my investigations, I discovered that the account owner has
died since July 2003 with all his family members in a plane crash.

Since his death, nobody has come forward to lay claims to this money
and recently my bank issued a notice that the account will be declared
unserviceable and the funds called to the government treasury since no
relative of the deceased customer came up.

In order to avert t his negative action, I now seek your permission to
have you stand as a next of kin so that funds can be released in your
favor as the next of kin.

Please acknowledge receipt of this message in acceptance of our mutual
business endeavor by furnishing me with the following if you are
willing to work with me Actually.

1. Your full name
2. Postal address
3. Profession
4. Telephone and fax numbers

This information will enable me work on the Deceased account file so
as to indicate you as his next of kin after which you will formally
apply for the release of the funds as the next of kin to the Deceased
customer to this bank I work at. We are going to share the total sum
on final conclusion of this project on a 50-50 equal.
If you are truly disposed and capable of handling this, reach me
Daniel Williams

Anti-fraud resources: