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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: Scott Dean <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Mon, 7 Mar 2016 02:12:42 -0800

Dear sir/madam,

This is to officially inform you that an international credit settlement via ATM VISA CARD has been issued to you by united nation compensation unit,please contact Jeff Wood for more detail.

Name: Jeff Wood
Address: Cotonou , Benin Republic

You are required to provide the following information:

1. Your full name.
2. Phone and fax number.
3. Address were you want the ATM Card to be sent.
4. Your age and current occupation
5. Attach copy of your identification.

We expect your urgent respond towards this mail to enable prepare your payment through the appointted body concerned.

Dr Scott Dean

Anti-fraud resources: