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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: "Carol Mitchell" <>
Date: Sun, 03 Feb 2019 21:54:09 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: RE>REPLY


My name is Carol Mitchell; I am an Esophageal Cancer patient, presently in a terminal stage. Please do not be surprise receiving this message from me please; do accept it as a blessing from God made possible through a woman with a good and sincere heart towards the poor orphans. I found your e-mail address in the web directory, and decided to contact
you, but if for any reason you find this mail offensive, you can ignore it and please accept my apology.

I also seek your help in prayers and to make good utilization of my fund which I will like to be used to assist the orphans as I could not do so due to my present health problem. I will be going in for an operation soon. I decided to donate the sum of Us$5,500,000 to you for the good work of God, to set up a foundation for the orphanage, widows and destitutes around the world.

I will need your Private Telephone and Fax Numbers, Your Address, Marital Status,Occupation to enable me link you up with the bank.

I will provide you more details information after knowing your willingness to handle this fund.

Thanks and God bless.

Carol Mitchell

Anti-fraud resources: