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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: Alex McDonald <>
Date: Fri, 3 Mar 2023 08:00:08 -0800
Subject: ATTN0000

Hello dear,
How are you doing today. I hope you are fine and healthy. Please did
you receive the mail I sent to you previously? It has been some days
now since I have not gotten any response from you which worries me so
much to ask if you really received my message at all. Please I would
like you to respond to me as soon as you can.
Best Regards
Alex McDonald

Anti-fraud resources: