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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. Onyie Lakey" <>
Reply-To: "Mr. Onyie Lakey" <>
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2014 22:28:13 +0900 (JST)
Subject: Dear Lucky Winner

Dear Lucky Winner,

This is to inform you that you are one of the Western Union Lucky winner of this year from West Africa Region branch Cotonou Benin Republic. You have won yourself $1.5Million United States Dollars for patronizing us over the years. Your name was out from the raffle draw box and we advice you to forward to us the below required information for the processing of your winning fund and quick release of your winning money.

Your Full Name, Address, Country, Age , Tel/Cell Phone, And copy of your ID or ID Number is needed. Once again Congratulation please keep patronizing us as we shall keep serving you better. 

Call if you have any question +229 98 280 587 

Best Regards,
Mr. Onyie Lakey
Western Union Agent
+229 98 280 587

Anti-fraud resources: