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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: "patrick" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 26 Dec 2015 04:26:35 -0500
Subject: I Need Your Help

Dear, My name is Barr. patrick, an Attorney from the Republic of Togo.
It might interest you to know that i have a deceased client who bears
the same name with you, who is now late, he deposited Nine Million
Five Hundred Thousand US Dollars, in a bank before his death, i have
contacted you to stand as his heir for the claim of the fund, reply if
you are interested for more details.

my private Email OR

Best regards,

Senior Advocate of Togo, (S.A.T).
Barr patrick.

Anti-fraud resources: