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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: David Bentley <>
Date: Mon, 13 Mar 2017 16:45:50 -0600
Subject: This requires a very private arrangement.

Dear Sir,
I write with respect to a private and confidential matter regarding
£4,800,000 (Four million, Eight Hundred Thousand British Pounds) only
in a dormant account in my bank here in London. You are hence being
contacted to be legally nominated as next of kin (inheritor) to a late
client who did not nominate an inheritor or next of kin to his account
before his death.

Nonetheless, this requires a very private arrangement. If you can
receive this fund under legal claims, then I will fill you in and your
participation will be 40% of the total money. There are practically no
risks involved as long as you will remain honest to me and follow my
instructions till the end of this important business. I will be
trusting in you and believe that you will never let me down either now
or in future. The whole process will be executed under a very
legitimate arrangement that will protect you and myself from any
breach of the law. It will be a simple bank-to-bank transfer via an
International Certified bank draft or Direct bank transfer. I have all
the details and will fill you in if you are really interested. Your
major role would be to stand as the beneficiary to this fund in our
bank and provide an account where the funds will be transferred.

Please note, you have the "express ticket" that is most valuable to
the success of this pursuit (your last name). Since you have a similar
last name to late account beneficiary, it will be most credible to
establish you as the next of kin/beneficiary. I took this decision
basically because of this reason and I hope it is going to open up a
good business relationship that will stand the test of time between
you and I.

All correspondence will be via email for now:,
but I will provide you with a telephone number to reach me as soon as
I confirm your seriousness to execute this deal with me.

Therefore, I will expect a straight answer from you. If yes, please
get back to me so that we can get this done without further delay.

Thank you and God bless you.

With regards,
David Bentley.

Anti-fraud resources: