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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: "Dr. Samia Mukhtar" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Thu, 25 Sep 2014 20:21:10 -0700
Subject: Hello Dear.

I got your e-mail address from an email directory and I tried contacting you through a more confidential way but I did not have the opportunity.
I'm Mrs. Samia Mukhtar, living in Treichville since 1980. I was married to Sir Thomas Mukhtar; my husband was a merchant of cocoa and coffee for over 37 years before he died in 2010. We were married for sixteen years without a child. He died after a brief illness that lasted for only four days. Before his death we were both devout Christians. Since his death I decided not to marry again so as not to have children out of wedlock. When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum of eight million six hundred thousand Euros in a bank here.
Recently, my doctor told me serious news about my health, he informed me that I cannot live the next two months and no more and that this was due to a problem-haematological cancer. What bothers me most is my blood pressure but this new disease. Having known my condition I decided to donate this fund to you so that you will utilize this money the way I will tell him.
I want you to give the money to charity organization that will use this fund for orphanages, widows, charities. I took this decision because I do not have any child that will inherit this money and my late husband's relatives are not happy with me because I have not had children, they felt that I deserved not their child.
I shall issue you a letter of authority that will prove that you are current recipient of the transfer. I want you to always pray for me because the lord is our savior. My happiness is that I now think I have lived a life worthy of a Christian. Please always pray for your life.
I would like of the amount to be used for charitable or setting up a charity for poor children and AIDS patients and that you retain . Please assure me that you will act accordingly as I stated above. I hope to receive your reply soon.
Please, receive the assurance of my high consideration.
Mrs. Samia Mukhtar

Anti-fraud resources: