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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: Minnie Sankawulo <>
Date: Tue, 22 Nov 2011 08:53:31 +0800 (SGT)
Subject: Hello sweetie.

Hello sweetie.
My name is Minnie, I saw your profile today on and was moved and become interested in you, I will like you to send me an email so that i can give you my pictures for us to know more better and see how things will go for us.
I believed we will get to be better friends or even more and remember that color or distance does not matter but LOVE matters alot in life). Reply me back with my email address hope to hear from you soon from Minnie reply at ( )

Anti-fraud resources: