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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:

Date: Thu, 06 Aug 2020 00:07:19 +0000
Subject: Maria Morato

Dear sir/Madam

My name is Maria Morato, I am the Administrative manager at a Vault of a
Financial & Security Institute in Spain.I discovered here in our bank an
abandoned sum of 26.7m US dollars (Twenty six million seven hundred
thousand United States dollars) in our safety deposit vault that belongs
to one of our foreign customers who died along with his entire family on
11th March 2008 in a ghastly car accident in Porto Portugal.
it’s my concern to demand your ultimate honesty, co-operation and
confidentiality to enable us claim this funds for our mutaul benefits.
If my opinion is to be respected, kindly get back to me for further

Yours sincerely,
Maria Morato,

Anti-fraud resources: