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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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Fraud email example:

From: "From Miss Ritter Johnson" <> (may be fake)
Date: Sun, 13 Mar 2005 17:25:37 +0100

Hello Dear,
I know that this proposal might be a surprise to you but do consider it as an emergency. In a nut shell, I am Miss Ritter Johnson 20 years old from the republic of Rwanda in Africa, now seeking for refugee in -Senegal under the(UNHCR). The child of late
Mr.Johnson. I got your contact from the Internet in Dakar for a possible transaction. My late father was the managing director of Glamour Gold and Diamond Mine company(HARBEL)Rwanda.But he was killed along side with my mother during the longing civil
war and all his properties were totally destroyed. However, after their death I managed to escape with a very important document -DEPOSIT CERTIFICATE of (US$8.7M)Eight million seven hundred thousand U.S Dollars only. This amount was deposited by my late
father in a reputable financial company .The deposit documents indicate me as the next of kin. Presently, I am saddled with the problem of securing a trust worthy foriegn personality to help me as follows: (1)Stand on my behalf as the beneficiary for the claim of the inheritance from The Bank,since the Bank adviced that I should solicit for an individual or corporate organization to claim the deposit for me as they cannot release it directly to me due to my refugee status in Senegal. (2)Transfer the money over to your own account,pending my arrival to meet with you. (3)Invest and manage the money for me in a good business pending my maturity. (4) Help me secure my travelling documents to meet you as soon as my money is released to you.Furthermore,you can contact the Bank for confirmation and I will issue a letter of authorisation on your name,that will enable the Bank to deal with you on my behalf.I am giving you this offers as menti!
oned with every confidence on your acceptance to assist me or adopt me as your Daughter and manage the money for me. Conclusively,I wish you send me a reply immediately you recieve this proposal. Until then,I remain with the best regards Ritter Johnson E-mail

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