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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: Esther Edwards <>
Date: Wed, 8 Nov 2006 09:24:47 +0000 (GMT)

Hi Ms Odila Himmel,

Thanks again for your kind and urgent mail which I read and understand that you are still entertaning fears, As I made you to understand in my previous mail to you that this transaction is legal, legitimate and hitchfree, this is why I invite you to come in person, come with it yourself, to be right here and see things yourself.

I know this question is likely to arise, but when you see me in person and know where I live and walk down to the finance house with me and see the fund, in your present everything will take place and the fund will be transfered and you verify that the fund has been credited to your account, then you will have no question of trusting you or not.

We have to trust each other when it comes to international business ok. This is bank to bank transfer which every body know the sender and the reciever, any where the fund went can be traceable, one cannot betray the trust. That is what I think I don't know about you. I can send you my photo and even deposit documents of this if you are really ready to actualise this transaction with me.

I am waiting for your urgent reply for further details if you are interested. Thank you for understanding and God bless you.

Kindest regards,

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Anti-fraud resources: