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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: " Christy Walton" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Thu, 12 Apr 2018 22:01:55 +0300
Subject: Re:

I am Mrs. Christy Walton, a citizen of the United States of America; I am widow and a business woman. I have recently been diagnosed with esophageal cancer and a rare heart disease which has defied all medical treatment. I am writing this e-mail to you with heavy sorrow in my heart, it is painful to let you know that I have been suffering from a rare heart disease for the past 7 years; expert diagnosis has shown that that I won't survive the illness and I have few days to live. I am contacting you because I don’t have any other option than to tell you as I was touched to open up to you about my project at hand.

In June 2005, I inherited the sum of US$18.2 Billion from my late husband Mr. John T. Walton following his death in a plane crash. Presently, I am worth US$48.1 Billion which rates me as the First richest woman in the world. The intention of this email is to seek for a charitable-minded individual, who can identify a viable and guarantee reasonable distribution of my wealth to the needy. I cannot rely on family and closest relatives anymore, as they did not show responsible behavior when I entrusted part of my wealth to them to distribute to charitable organizations but instead they used the money for their personal needs. To prevent any more mishaps, my attorney will act as a check, monitoring every aspect of the Charity. My will is with my Attorney which my family is fully aware about, but I kept the sum of $14,900,000.00 (Million USD) in a seperate bank account which nobody is aware of except my attorney.

Do get back to me as soon as you receive this email by providing me with your personal information for further details. Please treat this information as strictly confidential.
I await your response.

Stay blessed
Mrs. Christy Walton

Anti-fraud resources: