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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: "Herr.Richardson Themba" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Fri, 24 Nov 2017 22:18:11 +0100
Subject: Very Urgent!!!

Dear Friend,
I hope that this e-mail will not be a surprise to you but it is true. I am a staff of Standard Bank In South Africa. I decided to contact you regarding one of our customer from Europe who unfortunately is deceased, he left a large sum of money in a suspense account worth Twelve Million, Five Hundred Thousand United States Dollars only{$12,500,000.00} with our bank. The deceased died without a will or any next of kin.
I need the cooperation of a foreign partner like you, whom I can introduce as a relative of the deceased person so that we can claim the money for sharing/investment purpose.
I will give you further information on this subject matter upon your positive response.Please send your answer to this confidential e-mail
Best regards
Mr.Richardson Themba.

Anti-fraud resources: