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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: Tom Wills <>
Date: Sun, 23 Jan 2022 01:27:40 -0500
Subject: Greetings,


I am Agent Tom Wills from the FBI - Jacob K. Javits Federal Building,
26 Federal Plaza 23rd floor, New York, NY 10278, United States.

I can confirm to you that we have obtained a judgement for case file
#812300202021 in your favor.

This categorically implies that your compensation funds are due for
collection. As I noted in my first correspondence to you, you are to
receive this compensation funds through the Federal Reserve Bank - NY.

Please be guided to apply for an account with FRB - NY. Your
compensation funds shall be credited into your account with the FRB.

To open an account with the FRB - NY, make contact with the FRB
through this email - Please quote this reference in
your email - COMP-30030442121.

After setting up an account with the Federal Reserve Bank, you shall
provide me with your account for the crediting of the sum of
$4,750,000, your compensation funds.

Kindly confirm the receipt of this letter.


Agent Tom Wills
FBI Agent

Anti-fraud resources: