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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: Mrs Divine Kone <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Thu, 26 Jul 2007 18:05:39 +0200

DONATION FOR THE LORDDear Beloved,I am Mrs Divine Kone,I was born in Sierra-Leone but I am resident in ABIDJAN( COTED'IVOIRE) at present which will be probably my final resting place. I was born an orphan in 1955. I have no father or mother,and I have no relatives.I was blessed to have married a humble and kind man,Dr. JONATHAN KONE.We both struggled and worked hard and the Almighty blessed us abundantly with riches.He was a dealer in gold and diamond.I am now old and sick without a husband and children.This has made me unhappy. I have not re-married due to the fact that I want to cherish my husband`s memory. For 2 years now I have been seriously sick.I am presently in hospital suffering from colon cancer and stroke.The left side of my body is paralysed. The doctors say I have a few months to live.I have little time so I have committed it to spreading my wealth towards better health care for mankind because this will be what my husband wanted. There are several projects of which I don`t have time to execute at present so I have contacted you with the hope that you will carry out my instructions for the sake of God and humanity.Closer to his call home, he made me aware of the deposit he made with a financial security company worth $14 million U.S.D In currency.I want you to take custody of the deposit,and use the money to build an orphanage in your country.Giving to the poor and less privileged is what being a christian is about. All I need from you is your assurance that you will use this funds judiciously as stated in this message.Thanks and May you God bless you Abundantly.Mrs Divine Kone.
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Anti-fraud resources: