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YES, IT IS A SCAM
This web site curates (hilariously unsuccessful) attempts at ADVANCE FEE FRAUD .
[If you're already hip, skip to the scambaits ]
The sender claims to be a bureaucrat, banker or royal toadie, wanting to move vast sums into your hands, honestly or otherwise. There is no money to be moved - except yours. Palms must be greased, imaginary legal documents must be acquired - with your money. A few K here, a few K there. eventually you get wise, and retire to lick your wounds.
Other versions of the scam play on your charity, loneliness, or naiveté (you can't win a lottery you didn't enter!). Orphan, cancer patient, dead bank customer, phony job offer, overpayment with a cashier's check. same scam. You may be shown pictures of "money ". Same scam.
This site is devoted to the '419' scam - named after Section 419 of the Nigerian Criminal Code. Most '419' e-mails come from West Africa, chiefly Nigeria, or Nigerian expatriates (who happily scam other Nigerians). Although 419ers have their own style, their emails, which smack of political satire, contain elements harking back to 19th century European literature.
Yes, it's a crime, but the letters are funny. Read them out loud at parties and see. So are the responses.
[Some people write back just to waste the scammers' time. That is scambaiting, and the raison d'être for Scamorama.]
The 125 letters below introduce the literary genre of the Lads from Lagos .
Most readers say "what an obvious scam!".
Some say "I was almost fooled till I saw this site."
A handful say "couldn't mine be 'real'?"
Welcome to the Scamology. Stay safe out there!