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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: "From Mrs. Pamela Williams." (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sun, 3 Feb 2013 12:01:02 -0800
Subject: Happy New Year.

Hello Dear,
I am Mrs. Pamela Williams from Cote D`Ivoire, currently undergoing medical treatment at the Northern Centre For Cancer Care. My husband died in a car accident over a year ago and we were married with a child who is now 16. When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of $4.5 Million USD Dollars in a private bank here.
Cote D`Ivoire medical treatment Cancer center

I want a God fearing individual to manager this fund and provide succor to the poor in society and my son who is now 16yrs and too young to handle this matter.
I have already discussed this matter with my son and we resolved to make available to you 30% of the total fund for your labor and inconvenience.
Please contact me and let me know if you can be of help as my doctors told me that I could not last for more months due to my cancer and stroke condition. I shall give you all the legal papers so that you would not have any problem undertaking this matter which is completely lawful.

Best Regards, Mrs. Pamela Williams.

Anti-fraud resources: