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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: William Etse Yawo <>
Date: Mon, 20 Feb 2017 13:06:57 +0100
Subject: My Dear Friend

First I must solicit your confidence in this transaction, this is by
virtue of it's nature as being utterly Confidential and top secret.
Though I know that a transaction of this magnitude will make any one
apprehensive and worried, but I am assuring you that this is real and
genuine. My name is Mr. A.William Etse Yawo, I am the manager of the
Banque Atlantique, Kegue branch. I am a Togolese married with kids.

I am writing to solicit your assistance in the transfer of us$2,500.000.00.

This fund is the excess of what my branch in which I am the manager
made as profit during the last year. I have already submitted an
approved end of the year report for the year 2015 to my head office
here in Lome and they will never know of this excess. I have since
then, placed this amount of us$2,500.000.00 on a suspense account
without a beneficiary.

As an officer of the bank, I cannot be directly connected to this
money thus I am impelled to request for your assistance to receive
this money into your bank account. I intend to part 30% of this fund
to you while 70% shall be for me. I do need to stress that there are
practically no risk involved in this. It's going to be a bank-to-bank
transfer. All I need from you is to stand as the original depositor of
this fund.

If you accept this offer, I will appreciate your timely response.

With Regards,
Mr. A.William Etse Yawo.

Anti-fraud resources: