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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: "addoannan" <>
Date: Sat, 21 Jun 2008 15:00:01 +0100
Subject: Official message awaiting your answer

Attn: Dear,

I am Addo Annan, working with a Bank, Accra-Ghana as the manager. On the
course of the last year 2007 end of the year's report, I discovered that my
branch in which I am the manager made Five million, Four Hundred Thousand US
Dollars (5,400,000.00) as an excess profit. This fund is currently lying
unclaimed in my bank's NUSTRO ACCOUNT, without a beneficiary.

As an officer of the bank, I cannot be directly connected to this money thus
I am impelled to request for your assistance to stand as the beneficiary to
receive this money into your bank account, I shall provide you the pin-code
of the deposit when the time comes since I am the only person who knows
about this deposit. You shall be given 30% of this fund for your committed
effort while 65% shall be for me and my office and 5% shall be for
contingences. I do need to assure you that there is no risk involved in
this. It's going to be a bank-to-bank transfer. All I need from you is to
stand as the original depositor of this fund.

I will appreciate your timely response through my private email below

Yours truly,

Addo Annan

Anti-fraud resources: