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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:

Date: Mon, 26 Sep 2016 16:45:10 -0700
Subject: I am SSgt. George Ramos

Dear Friend,

I am SSgt. George Ramos, a US Marine served in the Hqs. Multinational
Corps Iraq afterward enrolled with a private military contracting firm
Black-water, which is now known as Academi and I am presently in
Afghanistan, and my unit Patrols in the Kabul province.

I am desperately in need of assistance and I have summoned up courage
to contact you. I must say that I am very uncomfortable sending this
message to you without knowing truly if you would misunderstand the
importance and decides to go public. In this regards, I will not hold
back to say that the essence of this message is strictly for mutual
benefit between you and me and nothing more.

I am presently in Afghanistan like I said I found your contact
particulars in an internet address journal. I am seeking your
assistance to evacuate the sum of $30,570,000.00 (Thirty million Five
Hundred and Seventy Thousand USD) to the States or any safe country of
your choice, as far as I can be assured that it will be safe in your
care until I complete my service here.

I have now found a secured way of getting the package out of
Afghanistan for you to pick it up. I do not know for how long I will
remain here as I have been lucky to have survived 2 suicide bomb
attacks by Pure Divine intervention. This and other reasons put into
consideration have prompted me to reach out for help, If it might be
of interest to you then endeavor to contact me and we would work out
the necessary formalities, but I pray that you are discreet about this
mutually benefiting relationship.

I want you to understand that this is no stolen money and there are no
dangers involved. Actually it is part of funds that we discovered from
the residence of fleeing Opium dealers in Afghanistan.

Contact me via my private mailbox:
( so that
I can furnish you with more details.


SSgt. George Ramos

Anti-fraud resources: