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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: hawkins stephen <>
Reply-To: hawkins stephen <>
Date: Mon, 19 Jan 2015 21:48:07 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: URGENTLY.


Hi there,
I am writing to inform you that due to public complain, and petitions, my department was mandated to investigate how some people like you have lost big sums of money to some internet scammers.
We are contacting you base on arrest already made by the FBI and interpol while from confessional statements by those arrested, contain details of your email address.
Sequel to the above ,be notify, that your name falls within the category of people to be compensated by the UN, that is why we are secretly contacting you,

You are advise as a matter of urgency to send your full name, address and mobile phone number so as to give you further details about how you will receive the compensation
For your own interest, you have to stop any further communication with any other person(s) or office(s) to avoid any hitches in receiving your payment. Because of impostors who are sending same messages.

Hawkins Stephen.

Anti-fraud resources: