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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: Mr william johnson <"www.">
Reply-To: Mr william johnson <>
Date: Sat, 26 Nov 2016 03:49:47 +0900 (JST)
Subject: Dear Friend,

Dear Friend,

I apologize for the testing that I have had to do to make sure that
you are a business man in United State Of America. I have to be very
careful. My name is MR PHILIP ANDERSON .

I work FOR WESTERN UNION. I am Director of Transaction Security
department for eight nations in West Africa (but I am based in the
Benin Rep).I have an idea that can make both of us a LOT OF
MONEY.Every year, thousands of Western Union transfers are never
picked up by the recipient.

Most are small ($500 to $800) but some are over $4,000.00. Even though
many transactions are small, if you pick up a lot of these, you can
make a lot of money quickly.

The usual reason a transaction was not picked up is this: A tourist
gets robbed or loses his wallet. He asks relatives in the USA to send
him money via Western Union Secure. He gets home without picking up
the money. Then he discovers that the money can only be picked up in
the country where he was traveling - it is not worth his time to
travel back for $100, so he forgets about it. These abandoned
transactions are called "orphans" here at Western Union. There are
thousands of them!

After 180 days, the MTCN number drops off the web and can no longer be
checked on the internet. But it is still a good MTCN, and I HAVE

I cannot travel to United State or to others foreign countries myself
to claim the money - it would be suspicious for a man in my position
with Western Union to travel to mostly United State, and then to have
a lot of orphan transactions getting paid out. What I can do is give
you the MTCN's, give you the question and the answer for each
transaction, and change the name of the recipient to your name.

As a test, I will send you 20 relatively small MTCN numbers (total
about $2,000) for whichever country you want out of my set of eight
countries. You pick up the money.

You send me one-half BY MONEY GRAM so that it cannot be traced to me.

Once you send me one-half, I will send you another set of 20 MTCN's.
Then another. Then another. And then another. There are thousands of
these orphan MTCN's in each of my eight countries. Many of these
transactions are larger than $1,000, and some are in excess of $3,000.

If you fail to send me 1/2, you will never hear from me again. But if
you are faithful in sending me my percentage, I will send you lots of

Are you interested? Are you in United State?

Let me hear from you.


Home address:.............
Cell phone number:........

you can call or text me on my office line at========+(17622361341

MR william johnson

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