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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: "Ms. Mariana Catarina" <>
Date: Thu, 14 Jun 2018 17:42:27 -0700
Subject: From: Ms. Mariana Catarina


I was browsing and I saw your e-mail So I decided to write you if your e-mail is real, I am Ms. Mariana Catarina Portuguese national but living Canada. please accept my apology for this unsolicited contact, I have been diagnosed with esophageal cancer. It has defiled all forms of medical treatment, and right now I have only about a few months to live. I am very rich, but was never generous; I have given most of my assets to my immediate family members.

I once asked members of my family to give some money to charity organizations, they refused and kept the money. I have a huge cash deposit of ($25M) with a finance House in United State. I will want you to help me collect this deposit and dispatch it to charity organizations. You will take out 25% of these funds for your assistance to help ME disburse this fund to charities. I have decided to give alms to charity organizations. I cannot do this myself anymore because of my health

Acknowledge this e-mail as soon and treats with confidentiality.

Awaits your reply for more details.

Yours Sincerely,
Ms. Mariana Catarina

Anti-fraud resources: