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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: "Ms. Elaine C. Duke" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Tue, 24 Apr 2018 12:04:41 -0700
Subject: United States Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security

U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Headquarters: 245 Murray Lane, Southwest,
Washington, DC 20528 USA.
Attn: Beneficiary.
According to the ethics of an office, introduction is always very important on a first contact like this. I am Ms. Elaine C. Duke, Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS). This Official Memorandum is to inform you that we discovered that some officials whom work under the United States government have attempted to divert your Funds (US$10,500,000:00) through a back-door channel. We actually discovered this today, through our Secret Agents under the Disciplinary Unit of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) after we apprehended (Mr. Ali Aeraby) a terrorist and money laundering suspect.
The mentioned suspect was apprehended at the (John F. Kennedy International Airport) early this morning, as he attempted to carry the enormous cash value of US$10,500,000:00 outside the shores of USA. In respect to the money laundering decree of United States, such amount of money cannot be moved in cash outside United States because such attempt is a criminal offense and is punishable under the money laundering act of 1982 of United States of America. This decree is a globalize law applicable in most developed countries in order to check-mate terrorism and money laundering.
From our gathered information here in this Unit, we discovered that the said Funds in question actually belongs to you, but it had been purposely delayed because the officials in charge of your Payment are into some sort of irregularities which is totally against the ethics of any Payment institution. Presently, this said Funds valued US$10,500,000:00 is under the custody of the Paying Bank (Citibank New York) and I can assure you that your Funds will be released to you without a hitch provided that you are sincere to us in this matter. Also, we require your positive co-operation at every level because we are closely monitoring this very transaction in order to avert the bad eggs in our society of today.
Today dated 26th October 2018, we have instructed the Executive management of (Citibank New York) to Release the said Funds to you as the certified Beneficiary in question, because we have valuable information's/records to authenticity that the said Funds truly belongs to you. Be that as it may, you are required to provide us with below listed information's (for official verification).
1. First Name, Middle Name and Last Name.
2. Age.
3. Occupation.
4. Marital Status.
5. Direct Telephone/Fax Number.
6. Residential address.
We await your immediate compliance to this official obligation, so that you can be paid by (Citibank New York).
Officially Sealed.
United States Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS).

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