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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: "Mrs. Margaret Bennett" <>
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 2018 10:39:47 +0000

Greeting in the Name of God

I am seriously sick, the Lord said I should contact you, I want you to use my funds to help the poor in your country, I am doing this because my Doctor told me that I may not live up to two Months after my surgery, Kindly reply to enable my account officer transfer my fund to you before my surgery.

Awaiting your urgent response.

Yours in Christ,

Mrs. Margaret Bennett

Anti-fraud resources: