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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: "Paul Davies" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 9 Feb 2013 06:48:04 +1030
Subject: Confirm Notice.


Dear Friend,

>From all my official investigation in your payment file I sincerely wish to inform you that you are not the original contractor/beneficiary of the said contract funds because you did not do any contract here with Nigeria government. The original contractor has completed his awarded contract with Nigerian government long time ago and received his full contract payment before you filed in your application for claims on the said funds.

However the amount you are now claiming is an over-invoiced contract/inheritance amount though which has been approved for payment in your name and favor of your company but we cannot make any further payment unless you will agree on my conditions that this fund shall be a deal between me and you because the fund does not belong to you rather to my country.

Moreover there are few mistakes in you payment file such as the contact approval numbers and amount as mentioned these are one of the reason you could not receive this payment until this moment.

Anyway my conditions are hereby as stated below.

1). You shall keep this deal between me and you as top secret because I am a civil servant.
2). As soon as you receive this funds I shall be entitled for 50% percent of the total sum.
3). You shall also give me letter of assurance that you will never reveal this deal to anybody.

Furthermore if you will not agree on my above conditions I shall forward every information concerning this payment to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Office of the Presidency and Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC), for out right cancellation of this payment automatically unless you will comply with conditions accordingly.

Meanwhile all I need from you is nothing but your sincere truth and co-operation so that I can tell you the next thing to do for the immediate release of the funds.

Be advised.

Paul Davies

Anti-fraud resources: