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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: Gabriel Addo <>
Date: Sun, 23 Oct 2011 01:47:28 +0800 (SGT)

Best regards!

My name is Mr. Gabriel Addo. I am a banker here in Ghana. I
got your contact from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of
International Trade and Industry. I need your help to transfer the sum of US$7,
500,000.00 into your account as my foreign partner.

The money is part
of the profits made by our bank last year (i.e. 2010) in the branch which i am
the manager. I have already submitted annual report for last year to my bank
head quarters in Accra - Ghana, and they did not notice the excess profits. I
deposited the US$7, 500,000.00 in an escrow account without a beneficiary
(Anonymous), to avoid any trace.

I cannot be directly connected to this
fund because I'm still working with the bank. So, I need your help to transfer
this money to your country for you and i to share. I offer you 40% of this money
as my foreign partner and 60% would be for me. There is no risk involved because
it will be a bank-to-bank transfer. All I need from you is to stand as my
foreign partner and owner of the money to enable you present a foreign bank
account where the money will be transferred to.

If you accept this
proposal, I am prepared to go into partnership with you. Please kindly reply to
me for more information on how to proceed.

Mr. Gabriel

Anti-fraud resources: