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Nigerian Letter Scam

The number “419” refers to the section of the Nigerian Criminal Code dealing with fraud, the charges and penalties for offenders. The scam has been used with fax and traditional mail, and is now prevalent in online communications like emails. Other variations include the Spanish Prisoner scam and the black money scam.
  • The scammer wants you to think you are helping a government official get millions of dollars out of Nigeria.
  • The scammer wants you to believe you’ll get a large financial reward for helping them. They want to appeal to your greed.
  • The scammer wants to “use” your bank account to transfer the money out of Nigeria, or any other foreign country.
  • The scammer wants your banking information so they can take your money.
  • The scammer might ask you to take the money he puts in your account out in cash. He might then ask you to mail the cash to another address.
Click the play button below to watch a video example:
Click here to play the YouTube Video for this Senior Fraud Alert Scam Lesson
The first step is to identify the fraud. In the video above, were you able to hear the clues in the story and detect the Nigerian Letter Scam? The next step is to prevent the scammer from victimizing you or others. If you encounter a similar situation, use these tools to protect yourself from this type of fraud.
Nigerian Letter Scam Clues
  • The email, text message, or social media message come from someone you don’t know and didn’t ask to hear from.
  • The offer of money is too good to be true.
  • Was there a long and sad story about why the money cannot be transferred by the government? If yes, it is a scam
  • Governments don’t ask individuals to help them transfer money.
  • The scammer will often ask you to make payments for the transfer fee via a money transfer service before they will put the money in your account.
Nigerian Letter Scam Defence
  • Do not respond to the contact.
  • Never send money or give credit card details to anyone who contacts you asking to transfer money for them.
  • Never mail cash.
  • Report, delete and block the email
  • Seek independent advice from someone you know and trust if in doubt.
Now it’s your turn!


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