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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: "Mrs. Ann Gates." <>
Date: Sat, 28 Apr 2018 09:18:10 +0100

My Dear Friend,

Let me first of all inform you, I got your email address from a mail
Directory and decided to mail you for a permission to go ahead. I am Mrs.
Anna Gates from United Kingdom, married to Dr. Harry R. Gates who worked
with Texaco Oil Company in Malaysia before he died in a ghastly motor
accident on his way to a Board meeting. My Husband and me were married but
without any children. Since his death I decided not to re-marry and
presently I am 69 Years old. When my late husband was Alive he deposited
the sum of $16.5M(Sixteen Million Five Hundred Thousand U.S. Dollars) with
a Bank.

Presently this money is still with the Bank and the management just Wrote
me as the beneficiary to come forward to receive the money or rather Issue
a letter of authority to somebody to receive it on my behalf. I am
presently in a hospital where I have been undergoing treatment Cancer of
the lungs. I have since lost my ability to talk and my doctors have told me
that I have only a few months to live so I think the best thing to do is to
use the money for charity purposes. I want a person who is trustworthy that
I will make the beneficiary of my late Husband's Fund deposited with the
bank so that the person can get the money and utilize 70% of this money to
fund churches, orphanages and widows around the world.

As soon as I receive your reply I shall give you the contact details of the
Bank. I will also issue you a letter of authority that will prove you as
the new beneficiary of this fund.Please assure me that you will act
accordingly as I stated here in and Keep this contact confidential till
such a time this funds get to your Custody. This is to ensure that nothing
jeopardizes my last wish on Earth.

I await your urgent reply.


Mrs. Anna Gates

Anti-fraud resources: