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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: "Joo Martins"<>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Thu, 15 Oct 2015 07:25:45 +0100
Subject: Alert

I came across your email in a vocational site and decided to alert you on this lucrative venture. I am an executive manager with a leading Investment Management Institution in London.

I have an investor under my portfolio with a closing balance of Fifteen Million US dollars as his initial deposit. This investor died intestate six years ago leaving no WILL or any authorization for Re-transfer of this investment fund to his heir.

I have monitored this deposit and accrued interest for 72 months now and non of his relatives have made claim for this fund, it is very clear that his family knew nothing about this deposit, thereby creating an open avenue for claim of the said funds on presentation of a trustworthy foreign partner that can stand as a relative to the deceased.

If you are interested I can present you as the relative, back up with adequate legal documentations and on doing this, our establishment will not question the release of the funds to you. I will make sure that we comply with the banking laws and ethics of claiming the estate.

Contact me for more details if you are interested.

Joo Martins.

Anti-fraud resources: