fighting spam and scams on the Internet
Try our spam filter!
Free trial for 30 days

About Us

"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.

Click here to report a problem with this page.



Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:

Fraud email example:

From: "Mr. William R. Charles" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Mon, 1 Feb 2016 01:09:10 +0300
Subject: Acknowledge receipt of this message

83 Market Street, Johannesburg, South Africa.
Tel: +27-810-576-830        NKANGALA  ATTORNEYS
My name is Mr. William R. Charles of Nkangala Attorneys, we specialise in corporate and legal claims. I am contacting you in regards to a deceased client who died in an auto accident in Cape Town, South Africa in March 2012; He was a citizen of your country and shares the same last name with you.
Before his death, my client had (US$ 50 Million) with a financial institution here in South Africa; In view of the South African Law of Succession, claims of this nature can only be made by a surviving  relative/ family member. Unfortunately he had no will at the time of death. All efforts made through some Private Investigators in South Africa have revealed no link to any of his family member, but your name came up because you share same last name.
With the applicable law of succession there is a duration within which such claims must be applied for, and as a result I am under pressure to present the next of kin or a relative who will claim the funds, and failure to do this would legally allow the financial institution to report the funds to the South African Treasury as unclaimed funds (Lack of supersede). It is therefore my intention to introduce you as the next of kin/beneficiary, Please note that I'm legally equipped with all necessary information/documentations concerning the funds.
Upon your decision of acceptance, the release of these funds in your favor as beneficiary will be processed within two weeks. You would be entitled to 50% of this fund. If you are willing to work with me on this, please contact me via the above phone number or via email. In conclusion, it's my concern to demand your ultimate honesty, co-operation and confidentiality to enable us conclude this transaction. I assure you that this process would be executed under a legitimate arrangement that would legally protect you and I from any breach of any law. Please note; what drives my interest here is not greed rather it would make no sense to allow this huge amount of money to go to waste when we can take advantage of the situation, and honestly if we donít do this; it will still end up in private pockets of people in government.
Best regards,
Mr. William R. Charles

Anti-fraud resources: