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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. David Mark" <>
Reply-To: "Mr. David Mark" <>
Date: Thu, 14 Jul 2016 20:07:03 +0900 (JST)
Subject: I sent the money $5,000.00 USD Reference 94575379

I sent the money $5,000.00 USD Reference 94575379

Your first payment of $5000.00 has been sent today via Money Gram .You are advise to Contact Money Gram with your full
information to enable them give you Sender Name, Question and Answer
to pick up your First $5000 MTCN= (94575379) sender name (Mark Ambros) For more information contact Mr. David Mark Tele:+22998304780

Email( he'll keep sending your payment until
your total fund of 7.5M.usd is Completed

Receiver's Name________
Address: ____________
Country: ____________
Phone Number: ________

Best Regards,
Money Gram
Mr. William Anthony
IMF Managing Director Benin

Anti-fraud resources: