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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: "MRS. GRACE BOYI." <>
Date: Sat, 12 Aug 2017 13:16:46 +0100

My Dear Good Friend

I crave your indulgence at this mail coming from somebody like me, whom you
do not know before. I decided to do this after praying over my present
Situation. You should please consider the transaction on its content and
not the fact that you have not known me before. I need not dwell on how I
came by your contact information because there are many such possibilities
these days. I would like to introduce myself as MRS.GRACE BOYI, from
Republic of Benin in West Africa, a widow to Late MR.DAVID BOYI a former
Consular of the Benin Embassy. I have recently been diagnosed of Cancer of
the Pelvic and attending my medical treatment at St Victoria Private Clinic
here in Benin Republic. I am writing to you now from my sick bed because of
how this transfer is urgent to me. There is US$18.5 (Eighteen Million Five
Hundred Thousand United State Dollars) my husband has in an account with
the AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT BANK here in Cotonou Benin Republic, of which I am
the next of kin.

With my health condition and because my husband and I have no children, I
am looking for a credible person that will not betrayed me whom I will pass
the right of next of kin. This person will apply to the bank and request
for an immediate release of the fund to his/her bank account. This is on
the condition that you will take only 30% of the fund for yourself, 10%
used for expenses, while you will use the remaining 60% for the less
Privilege people in the society. I will issue you my late husband STANDING
ORDER WILL which he wrote and Deposited a copy to the bank before he died
which my appointed next of kin have to present a copy to the bank as the
real appointed person before the bank will release the fund into his
account, which i promise to issue you a copy of the STANDING ORDER WILL to
proceed for the release of the fund, not only that, my late husband have
already prepared all the necessary Document which are needed on the time of
transfer and is now with the African development Bank such as CERTIFICATE
will release to you According to my late husband instruction as soon as you
have contact the Bank for the fund release.

This is in fulfillment of the last request of my husband: that a
Substantial part of the fund be used to carter for the less privileged. If
This condition is acceptable to you; you should get back to me immediately
With your full names and contact information as indicated below so that I
Will use your contact to write to my bank here immediately to inform them
That my appointed next of kin will contact them for an immediate release Of
the fund so that they will be ready waiting for you to contact them.

I will also ask our family lawyer to prepare an authorization letter that
will give you the right of next of kin to the deposited fund with the bank.
I will also give you a letter of release which you will fill and send to
the bank for the release of the fund. I cannot predict what will be my fate
by the time the fund will be transferred into your account, but you should
please ensure that the fund is used as i have described above.

Kindly send your information immediately as stated below via my email
address: (

1. Your Full Name/ Full Address
2. Your Age/ Sex
3. Your Marital Status
4. Your Occupation
5. Your Mobile Number


Anti-fraud resources: