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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. Malachi Austin" <>
Reply-To: "Mr. Malachi Austin" <>
Date: Fri, 21 Nov 2014 22:03:41 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Re: Transaction of $15.5 Million Dollars

 Dear Friend

I know that this letter will definitely come to you as a huge surprise, but I beg you to   read it carefully and work with me for the betterment of our lives. Firstly, I am Mr.   Malachi Austin a bank manager in Unity Finance Trust Bank. There is abandoned $15.5 million  dollars in Account Numbers  (5010787556) in our bank branch. These $15.5  million dollars  was abandoned in the account since 1996. I will give you the secret code  and password to  confirm the money by yourself through our bank website.

However, I will be going for retirement next year and if this money is left unclaimed, our   bank will inherit it without benefit to individual, Orphanage and less privileges. I   request you to act as a beneficiary to this $15.5 million dollars. I have every secret   details of the account and I will guide you for this claim and also do every underground   work here to make sure the money is release to you. As an experienced banker, I am assuring  you that this is 100% legal and risk free because I have every true details of the money.  If you are interested to work with me,  kindly reply so we can proceed.

Thanks and God bless you
Mr. Malachi Austin
Managing Director
Unity Finance Trust Bank
Phone: +229-991-677-13

Anti-fraud resources: