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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: "Edward Effah" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Wed, 19 Nov 2014 16:59:18 +0100
Subject: Very Urgent.

Good Day,
How are you doing today? I know that this mail will come to you as a surprise hence we have never met before, but do not worry because I am using the only secured and confidential medium available to seek for your foreign assistance in a business. I am contacting you independently of my investigation and no one is informed of this communication. My name is Mr. Edward Effah. I am the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Fidelity Bank here in Ghana. Please I advise you to check these websites below to confirm my status.
I Hope that you will not expose or betray this trust and confident that I am about to repose on you for the mutual benefit of our both families. I am writing in respect of a foreign customer of our Bank (Lenor and Richard Burson from Florida, U.S.A) who died along with his entire family in a plane crash. For more information's about the crash you can visit this site:
Since the tragic death of this our customer, I personally has watched with keen interest to see the next of kin but all has proved abortive as no one has come to claim his funds of US$13,580.000.00M (Thirteen Million Five Hundred and Eighty Thousand United States Dollars) which has been with our bank for a very long time. On this note, I decided to seek your name to be used as the Next of Kin so that this amount will be transferred to you since nobody is coming for the money again. The Banking ethics here does not allow such money to stay more than 14 years, because the money will be transferred to the Bank treasury as unclaimed fund after this period.
In view of this, I got your contact through the internet when I was making a research for a foreigner that I will use in this great opportunity because I don't want the money to be transferred to our Bank treasury as unclaimed fund. I am offering you 20% of the total sum if you agree to execute this transaction with me and the rest 80% will be for me. The reason for a foreigner in the business is for the fact that the deceased man was a foreigner and it is not authorized by the law guiding of Fidelity Bank for a citizen of this country to make such claim. This is the reason while the request of you as a foreigner is necessary to apply for the release and transfer of the fund smoothly into your reliable Bank account.
If you are really sure of your integrity, trustworthy and confidentiality, and accept not disappoint me after this business, please reply with your:-
{1} Full Names
{2} Address
{3} Telephone Number, Office and Cell/Mobile
{4} Fax Number
{5} Occupation
{6} Age
{7} Valid identification/ international passport or driving license
Upon receipt of the above mentioned information's, indicating your interest in the business, I will inform you of the next step for easy execution of the transaction.
I will not fail to bring to your notice this business is hitch free and don't have any negative implication. Please you should not entertain any fear as I have made all modalities for the smooth and easy transfer of this fund to your account. This transaction will be completed within few Bank working days immediately we start the business. Please observe utmost confidentiality and be rest assured that this transaction would be most profitable for both of us because I shall require your assistance to invest my share in your country immediately after the transaction. Waiting for your urgent response and please kindly delete if you are not interested.
Please kindly contact me with this E-mail address for more details:
Mr. Edward Effah
Managing Director
Chief Executive Officer, Fidelity Bank.

Anti-fraud resources: