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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: joan ken <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Tue, 20 Nov 2007 00:37:50 +0000

YOU ARE THE CHOSEN ONEPlease let this not sound strange to you. I am Mrs. Joan Ken from Netherlands, I am 64 years old I am deaf and suffering from a long time cancer of the breast which also affected my brain, according to my doctors they have advised me that I may not live for the next two months, this is because the cancer stage has gotten to a very bad stage. I was brought up from motherless babies home was married to my late husband for twenty years without a child, died in a fatal motor accident. I sold all my inherited belongings and deposited all the sum of $12.5million dollars with a Security Company. Presently, I'm with my laptop in a hospital where my doctors have told me that I have only a few months to live. It is my last wish to see that this money is invested to any organization of your choice and distributed each year among the charity organization, the poor and the motherless babies home where I come from.I want you use this money to fund churches, orphanages and widows; I took this decision, before I rest in peace because my time will soon be up. As soon as I receive your reply I shall give you the contact of the Security Company. Please assure me that you will act accordingly as I stated herein. Hoping to hearing from you soon. Calavary Love,Mrs. Joan Ken
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