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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: Michael Williams <>
Date: Sat, 31 Jul 2021 13:27:15 -0700
Subject: Dear Friend!

*Dear Friend!*

*This mail may be a surprise to you because you did not give me the
permission to do so and neither do you know me but before I tell you about
myself I want you to please forgive me for sending this mail without your
permission. I am writing this letter in confidence believing that if it is
the will of God for you to help me and my family, God almighty will bless
and reward you abundantly. I need an honest and trustworthy person like you
to entrust this huge transfer project unto.My name is Mr.Williams, The
Branch Manager of a Financial Institution. I got your contact through a
reliable source called database through Ghana chamber of commerce. I am a
Ghanaian man married with 3 kids. I am writing to solicit your assistance
in the transfer of US$12,500,000.00 Dollars. This fund is the excess of
what my branch in which I am the manager made as profit last year (i.e.
2020 financial year). I havealready submitted an annual report for that
year to my head office in Accra-Ghana as I have watched with keen interest
as they will never know of this excess. I have since placed this amount of
US$12,500,000.00 Dollars on an Escrow Coded account without a beneficiary
(Anonymous) to avoid trace.As an officer of the bank, I cannot be directly
connected to this money thus I am impelled to request for your assistance
to receive this money into your bank account on my behalf. I agree that 45%
of this money will be for you as a foreign partner, in respect to the
provision of a foreign account, and 55% would be for me. I do need to
stress that there is practically no risk involved in this. It's going to be
a bank-to-bank transfer. All I need from you is to stand as the original
depositor ofthis fund so that the fund can be transferred to your
account.If you accept this offer, I will appreciate your timely response to
me. This is why and only reason why I contacted you, I am willing to go
into partnership investment with you owing to your wealth of experience, So
please if you are interested to assist on this venture kindly contact me
back for a brief discussion contact me back through this address {*

*Mr Williams ,The Regional Manager,Tema Branch, Accra - Ghana*

Anti-fraud resources: