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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: "Mr. Terry Johnson" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Fri, 24 Sep 2010 20.12.29 +0200
Subject: Instuctions To Release Your Fund?

Good Day TO You!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have been waiting for you since to contact me for your Confirmable Bank Draft of $850,000 United States Dollars, but I did not hear from you since for a couple of weeks now. Then I went to the bank to confirm if the draft has expired or getting near to the date of expire and Dr.Anne,Irwin the Director Bank of Union Bank told me that before the draft will get to your hand that it will expire.

You may not understand why this mail came to you. But if you do not remember me, you might have received an email from me in the past regarding a multi-million-dollar business proposal which we never concluded I am using this opportunity to inform you that this multi-million-dollar business has been concluded with another person who financed It to a logical conclusion.

I thank you for your great effort to our unfinished transfer of fund into your account due to one reason or the other best known to you but I want to inform you that I have successfully transferred the fund out of the security company to my new partner's account in London that was capable of assisting me in this great venture.

Due to your effort, sincerity, courage and trustworthiness you showed during the course of the transaction I want to compensate you and show my gratitude to you with the sum of $850,000 I have left an international Certified Bank Draft for you worth about $850,000 cashable anywhere in the world.

My dear friend I will like you to contact Mr . Thom Chris for the collection of this international certified bank draft have authorized to release the international Certified Bank Draft to you the only Money your are to pay them is the total of $190 which is for security fee as soon as you contact him regarding this issue because at these moment I'm very busy here because of the investment projects which myself my new partner are having at hand.

Please I will like you to accept comtact Mr .Thom Chris so that he will send the draft to you without any delay.

Directors Name: Mr.Thom Chris
Company Name: Federal Express Courier Company (FedEx)
Email :
Phone : +234 802 307 3299
1, Your Full Name:
2, Your Delivery Address:
3, Your Cell Phone Number:
4, Your Age:
5, Your Country:
7, Your Sex:

You are to forward payment information to them via this email after making the
Payment, the payment information is as follows:

Sender Names:.........................
Sender Address......................
Amount Send: $190.....................
Text Question: In God
Text Answer: .We Trust
Money Transfer Control Number for Western Union payment
Method (M.T.C.N).....................
Reference Number for Money Gram payment method

Therefore, you should send him your full Name and telephone number your address where you want him to send the draft to you.

Thanks and God bless you and your family. I am very busy now I may not reply to any email for some time.

Your Sincerely,
Mr. Terry Johnson

Anti-fraud resources: