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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: "Paymaster Terry" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Tue, 14 Sep 2010 23:44:37 -0700
Subject: Read and Reply now

Dear Inheritor,

Your Funds were returned to the Federal Government Treasury a while ago because you did not finalize your claim
for it. A week ago, the Presidency and The Federal Executive Council collectively agreed to release the sum of
US10 (TEN MILLION DOLLARS) to you but to our surprise you sent down your representatives Mr. Robert Jason
and Mr. Jim Harrison to collect this Funds on your behalf, this morning.
Since you sent your representatives to us, kindly give us the authority to transfer your Funds into their own Bank
Account in Singapore.
We await your immediate response via email and telephone But if you did not Authorize this claim then fill and
submit this form right away to this department :

Full Name,Address,Phone Number,Occupation,Country.

Reply only to:
Phone Number : +234 - 81 -37393354

Officially Sealed,
Dr Terry Edmond.
The Honorable Paymaster General.

Anti-fraud resources: