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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: "Mrs. Benedicta H. Powel" <>
Reply-To: "Mrs. Benedicta H. Powel" <>
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 2014 07:42:07 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Contact Dr. William Watts Immediately


Undersigned is Mrs. Benedicta H. Powel, US. Embassy delegated barrister and chief coordinator of ongoing compensation program in favour of scammed victims (USA); you are now entitled to start receiving $6000 on a daily bases through Western Union office as scammed victims, Contact Dr. Williams Watts via Email: ( Tell: +229-99873347, update him with your contact detail such as:

Your full name.....
And phone number.......

Furthermore you are advised to call Dr. Watts as instruction was passed for confirmation and
verification that within 6hours without hearing from you, Count your payment canceled.However he will provide you the necessary information to pick up your first payment of $6000 today. Your compensation is ($1.3Million USD) thank you,

Mrs. Benedict H. Powel.

Anti-fraud resources: