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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: john willson <>
Date: Thu, 9 Oct 2014 13:29:04 +0100
Subject: Good-Day Friend

Good-Day Friend,

Pardon me if this comes to you as a surprise because we have not met
before. I pulled out the trust and courage to look for a trustworthy
and sincere person like you who will be competent for this transaction
believing that you will never let me down either now or in the future.

My Name is Mr. John willson, I work with one of the prime banks here
in Abidjan Cote d'Ivoire as a project and investment officer; there is
the sum of US$ 20,600,000.00 (Twenty Million, Six Hundred Thousand
United States dollars) in my bank, there were no beneficiary avowed
relating to these funds which means no individual would ever come
frontward to claim it.

My motive of contacting you is for us to work together in relocating
this funds out from my bank into your bank account or any other
account of your choice. As soon as the funds are relocated to your
selected option (bank account) we shall then share in the ratio of 60%
for me, 40% for you. If interested and equipped to do this business
with me, revert back to me for more details.E-mail

I look forward to hear from you in the earliest.

Best Regards,
Mr. John willson

Anti-fraud resources: