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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: "Philip Duke" (may be fake)
Date: Thu, 28 Sep 2017 06:44:25 -0700
Subject: From Philip Duke (Good News)

From Philip Duke
Hamburg - Germany
It may surprise you receiving this letter from me, since there was no previous correspondence between us. I am an attorney .
I am contacting you to help me in transfering the money left in a bank by my client who died some years ago, to avoid it confiscated by the bank.
The Bank has issued me a notice to contact the next of kin or the money will be diverted to the Bank Treasury. But all my efforts to contact someone related to this man has not been possible. That is why I am contacting you.
I am actually asking your consent to present you to the bank as the next of kin / beneficiary of my late client's money, so that the money will be transferred to your account , then we will share the money in a mutual agreement on the basis of percentage.
Any legal document to support your claim as my client next of kin will be provided. All I need is your honest cooperation to enable us achieve this transaction. The transaction will be done under legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the law.
I wait for your urgent and positive response.
Philip Duke

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