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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: Mrs Sarah Joseph <>
Date: Sat, 22 Feb 2014 23:22:34 +0900 (JST)
Subject: I am Mrs Sarah Joseph a born again Christian

Hello ,

I am Mrs Sarah Joseph a born again Christian and a widow and I want to make a donation of $5.8Million to help Orphans and Charitable home in your Country and I assumed that you will be able to receive this Fund and use it to my wished to the needy in your country and i am seriously ill, please always putting me in your daily prayers because i don't know when it will end with me as i am suffering from chronic cancer. Reply back to me immediately for more details about this fund.

Mrs Sarah Joseph

Anti-fraud resources: