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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: "Lui Erh Fei" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Oct 2018 16:56:49 -0700
Subject: GOOD-DAY

From the Desk of Liu Erh Fei,
Please treat this with the utmost confidentiality and if you do not have interest I apologize for my intrusion on your time as I beg you to forget you ever received a letter like this. My name is Liu Erh Fei; I am a senior staff with Wing Lung Bank 112 Queen's Road, Central, Main Branch, Hong Kong. I have a matter of utmost importance and confidentiality that I will like to discuss with you. I hope you will not be offended as it will be of mutual benefit to us. I am contacting you concerning an investment that was placed under our bank's management for a period of 18 months in 2014. A client of my bank by the name Mr.Richard Gelb made a Fixed Deposit for this period in my branch. If you are familiar with private banking affairs, those who patronize our services usually prefer anonymity, but also some levels of detachment from conventional processes.
Upon maturity, I sent a routine notification to his forwarding address but got no reply. After some months, we sent a reminder only to be informed of his death. On further investigation, I found out that he died without making a WILL, and all attempts to trace his next of kin have been fruitless as Mr.Richard Gelb did not declare any kin or relations in all his official documents,including his Bank Deposit for paper work in my Bank.
If you are interested then a bank account in any part of the world that you will provide will then be used to facilitate the transfer of this money to you as the beneficiary/next of kin. The money will be paid into your account for us to share, We share equally (45% each) while the balance 10% to cover all other expenses like taxes, lawyers fees etc.. There is no risk at all as all the paperwork for this transaction will be done by an attorney and my position as a top official guarantees the successful execution of this transaction.If you find yourself able to work with me, contact me through my email below as according to the banking laws of Hong Kong,if nobody comes forward to claim the funds after Five(5) Years,the money will be reverted back to the Government . If you give me positive signals, I will initiate this process towards a conclusion.Please send me your confidential telephone numbers for easy communication. Please observe utmost confidentiality,
and be rest assured that this transaction would be most profitable for both of us.
Best regards
Liu Erh Fei.
Wing Lung Bank
112 Queen's Road,
Central, Main Branch,
Hong Kong.

Anti-fraud resources: