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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: raymond williams <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Wed, 14 Nov 2007 01:51:04 +0100

FROM RAYMOND & JOYABIDJAN COTE D IVIOREMy Dear CONFIDENTIAL I am Raymond williams from Ivory Coast. I lost my Father Mr.williams kono. My Father was a serving director of the Cocoa exporting abroad until his death . He was assassinated january 09/01/2004 by the rebels following the political uprising. Before his death he had a foreign account here in Cote d' Ivoire up to the tune of ($12.5M) which he told the bank was for the importation of cocoa processing machine. I want you to do me a favour to receive this funds to a safe account in your country or any safer place as the beneficiary . MOREOVER,I AM WILLING TO OFFER YOU 10% OF THE TOTAL SUM AS COMPENSATION WHEN THE FUND IS SUCCESSFUL TRANSFER TO YOUR NORMINATED BANK ACCOUNT IN YOUR COUNTRY.)I have plans to do investment in your country, like real estate and industrial production.This is my reason for writing to you.Please if you are willing to assist me indicate your interest in replying me soonest.ThanksBest regardsRaymond & Joy.
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Anti-fraud resources: