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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: JOHNSON <>
Date: Sat, 20 Nov 2021 17:44:28 -0800

I'm Johnson Edward, expert in corporate and legal claims; I'm a
partner at Thomson &
I am contacting you in regards to a deceased client who died in an
auto accident on the
Madrid Highway in March 2020, he was a prominent client of mine. We
happens to share
the same last name with you.
Before his death, my client deposited (22million$) at the vault of a
financial institution here
in USA, documentations regarding these transaction indicates that
claims can only be
made by his relative family member. Unfortunately he had no will at
the time of his death.
All efforts made revealed no link to any of his family member.
However, the New USA law of succession/claims/fund indicates a
duration in which such
claims could be tolerated. The financial institution have mandated me
to present the next of
kin or a relative who will claim the funds and Failure to respond to
this ultimatum would
legally allow the financial institute to report this funds to the
central bank of USA as
unclaimed funds(Lack of supersede).
I and my colleague have put in place all necessary requirements
concerning the release of
this funds and It is my intention to introduce this opportunity to you
as the beneficiary.
Please note that I'm legally equipped with all necessary
concerning this fund.
Upon your decision of acceptance, I would process the release of these
funds to your
possession; you would be entitled to 50% of the said funds and 50% for me
For security reasons, I have decided not to add more information into
this letter, but
immediately you get in touch with me, I would be able to inform you on
how this could be
For time difference and confidential reasons, I strongly advise that
you firstly contact me
via fax or email"
Its' been my wish to have an investment outside my country, so this is
an opportunity for
me to invest my share of these funds in your country.
In conclusion, it's my concern to demand your ultimate honesty, co-operation and
confidentiality to enable us conclude this transaction. I GUARANTEE
that this process
would be executed under a legitimate arrangement that would legally
protect you from any
breech of Law.
Johnson Edward

Anti-fraud resources: