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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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Fraud email example:

From: "Williams Duru" <> (may be fake)
Date: Tue, 6 Jan 2004 16:09:46 +0100
Subject: Require A sense Oo urgency


From the desk of: Williams Duru

I am Williams Duru the Director of Operations with
CHALLENGE SECURITIES Lagos here in Nigeria. Our firm
is a security company of high repute with years of
outstanding service to the people of Nigeria. I have
resolved to contact you through this medium based on
business proposal that will be of mutual benefit to
both of us. To be explicit and straight to the point.
Some time early 1997, a reputable client of ours
deposited a consignment in our company's vault for
safekeeping. And since then our client has failed to
come forward to claim his consignment, which has
accumulated a considerable amount of money in
demurrage. Consequently, in our bide to contact this
client to come and redeem the demurrage which this
consignment had accumulated, we discovered that our
client was the former president of the Federal
Republic of Zaire, Who died of brief illness after he
was de-throwed in the same Year the consignment was
entrusted into our care. Since the death of our client
President Mobutu Seseseko, none of his benefactors has
come forward to claim the consignment with us, which
means that none of his relatives or aids had any
knowledge of this consignment.
Hence out of curiosity I decided to secretly open the
two boxes that our client deposited in our vault. And
to my surprise I discovered that the two boxes that
were registered as family treasure by our client
actually contained a considerable amount of money in
United States Dollars amounting to US$35 million
Dollar. Since this development I have been nursing
plans secretly.
I also found out from enquiries and the foreign media
that our late client siphoned a lot of money from his
country while he was in office as head of
state. It is my conviction that the consignment in our
vault was part of the money that our client siphoned
and now that he is dead there is no trace to
this money in our care.
I am now soliciting your noble assistance to assist me
in transferring this money out of Nigeria to your
country to immediate investment with your assistant. I
have also decided that you will generously be entitled
to 30% of the total and 65% will be for me and my
colleagues while 5% will be for any offset.
Upon my receipt of your reply confirming your
willingness to assist me of this transaction, I will
immediately arrange and transfer all the rights of
ownership of this consignment to your name to
facilitate your easy clearance and transfer of the
complete funds to your country.
Secondly, I will arrange for the consignment already
labeled as family treasure to be Lifted by diplomatic
means to our security company's correspondence in
Europe, America or in Asia where I will meet with you.
You have nothing to worry about, as I will be there to
assist you in anyway necessary with all proper
documentation. This Transaction is 100% risk free.
Please if you are interested do contact me at the
above e-mail with your name, telephone
number and fax number.
Please maintain absolute confidentiality on this
Yours faithfully,
Williams Duru

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