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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: "Efcc Headquarter" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Wed, 20 Jan 2010 01:04:33 -0800
Subject: Notice From EFCC Regarding Your Overdue Inheritance Fund.


My Name is Mrs. Farida Waziri the new Economic and Financial Crimes Commission chairperson in Nigeria. I guess you have been contacted several times by this office regarding the release of your outstanding payment. I understand you are expecting your delayed fund to be transferred to you, but some top government officials and bank partners will not tell you the truth about the whereabouts of your fund and all they are doing is to tell you to pay outrageous fees which you refused to come up with. I have to let you know the truth because I know you have gone far in trying to get this fund and must have paid some amounts of monies to persons you are not supposed to give out a dime to.

Right now, you have to notify us now if you’re still ready to make this claim or not because any date later than on the 25th of this month; the Federal Government of Nigeria might cancel your payment due to the long delay. I.e. you can’t receive this payment any date later than on the 25th of this month.

Note: that thousands of fraudsters have been using this method in scamming most foreign creditors we have in our payment list here in our office. We use this medium to inform you that any mail that does not come with the communication code: EFCC/NG/74-A0807777HJ/NG is false. In this case, you’re advice not to respond to any mail that does not come with the above communication code.

I expect your prompt response
Mrs. Farida Waziri.

Anti-fraud resources: