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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. Collins" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Thu, 10 Mar 2016 07:14:35 -0800
Subject: Re: Contact my secretary immediately.

Good News.

Compliments of the day and God's blessings. I am glad to inform you that I have
successfully concluded the transaction, the money has been transferred to London yesterday.I succeeded through the assistant of Mr.Patrick Richmond who is a London base business man, he cleared the fees and the fund was transferred to his account.Currently I am in London with him and my wife and children.

However, I did not forget you because you are the source of my success, you made me what I am now though you weren't there to complete this project with me but I give all the credit and thanks to you for your past efforts . I know it is not your fault or rather your wish to back out on me and the transaction. I understand it was your situation then.

In appreciation towards your assistance, I have mapped out as a compensation
and wrote on your favor a certified bank cheque worth of $1.5 Million (ONE MILLION FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND UNITED STATES DOLLARS ONLY). I left the cheque with my Secretary Mrs. Jennifer Vignon on my departure to London.

I would like you therefore, to contact her on the below info so that she can mail the bank cheque to you without any delays so that you will received it and then cash your money.

Name: Mrs. Jennifer Vignon

Contact my secretary in Republic of Benin so that she can release your bank cheque to you. I will stop here. Once again, thank you very much and remain blessed with your family.

Best Regards,
Mr. Charles Collins.

Anti-fraud resources: