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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: "George Wallace" <>
Date: Mon, 18 Jan 2016 14:01:51 +0000
Subject: INQUIRY


I hope this email gets to you this time as this is my third time of sending it? I had tried without success to locate your contact address and telephone number before I resorted to communicate with you via email which is an unconventional means of relaying an important message. Kindly accept my sincere apology if my message was unsolicited since you were supposed to be notified about this inquiry through an officially posted mail.

My name is George Wallace, I am an attorney and a Certified Private Investigator (CPI) accredited by Precise Business Consulting. We are presently conducting a very confidential investigation and recommendation exercise on behalf of Credit Suisse Bank , a financial investment arm of Credit Suisse Group. This investigation is in respect of a deceased customer who shares the same surname with you including circumstances surrounding his huge financial investments.

However, you might be interested in knowing that I got your impressive information after a very meticulous search online for a suitable successor to the deceased customer while tracing extended family ancestry records. I had decided to contact you before concluding my investigation.

The private banking customer died intestate and there were no other successors in title to the huge financial investments he made at Credit Suisse Bank. We have been assigned by the bank to recommend a surviving relative to the deceased customer for his lodgement claim before the bank gets it confiscated in the next 20 working days.

The essence of this message is to request you to provide answers/comments on any or all of the four questions below:

1. Are you aware of any relative or extended family of yours born on the 17th of February 1946 who shares the same surname with you and whose last known location was the United Kingdom ?

2. Are you aware of any reasonable financial investments made by this person at Credit Suisse Bank , a financial investment arm of Credit Suisse Group?

3. Could you establish beyond reasonable doubt your eligibility to assume status of successor in title to the deceased if you are legally recommended to the Bank ?

4. Would you advance a substantial part of the fund as donations to charity if you are eventually approved by the bank as the lodgement beneficiary ?

Your answers to the questions above would help to determine our recommendation to Credit Suisse Bank towards legally appointing you to inherit this investment fund after previously certified investigation by the bank had yielded negative results that there were no known relations to the deceased customer.

Be advised that we are constrained at this point from giving you detailed information concerning the investigation process for security reasons.

I would provide you with additional information on receipt of your response.

Thank you for accommodating our inquiry.

Yours Faithfully,

Mr. George Wallace.

Anti-fraud resources: