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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 Hanks." <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Tue, 18 Jan 2022 09:38:14 -0800

My name is  Tom Hanks. I am a 65 year old U.S citizen, I live in Evansville, Indiana. My address is 1709 Seasons Ridge Blvd Evansville, IN 47715, USA. I'm moving to my new home I recently bought, I was one of the scam victims who participated in the Compensation Awards Program in the United States and Europe many years ago and they refused to pay me. I paid over $27,500 to a scammer in the United States, I decided to cut off all communications with the scammer who took all I had, I flew to Rome Italy with the benefit of doubt with all documents  backing up my compensation claim.
I was told to contact Barrister  Peter Benson, a member of the Compensation Awards Program to help finalize my long held compensation funds, we proceeded to the nominated bank in charge of the remittance where I submitted all relevant documents to back up my claim. It took three working days to get the payment released from the bank, right now I am the happiest man in the world because I have received $5,500,000.00 in compensation (Five Million, Five Hundred Thousand United States Dollars). In addition, Barrister Peter Benson showed me a compiled list of those who have not been paid and I saw your full contact details and was told you are an unpaid beneficiary.
I advise you to desist from email or text communications with those impersonators, they mean no good and will continue to swindle you until you are financially handicap!!! I believe a word is enough for the wise! I am sure you have been told to send one amount after the other? Truth be told... there is no end to their games, stop talking or emailing those scammers.
Your compensation funds will be released and you are not meant to spend any amount exceeding $250 .I spent just that amount and now I am living the dream life I have always wanted.
Quickly contact Barrister Peter Benson to help bring your dream to reality.
Best Regards,
Mr. Tom Hanks.
Address: 1709 Seasons Ridge Blvd Evansville, IN 47715, USA.

Anti-fraud resources: