History Main / FourOneNineScam

17th May '17 9:45:58 PM GoldenSeals
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The advance fee fraud, or the 419 scam after section 419 of the Nigerian criminal code, is a form of internet fraud commonly associated with nationals of the UsefulNotes/{{Nigeria}}n state.

It typically takes the form of someone under a false identity contacting a member of the public and asking them in [[{{Engrish}} suspiciously shaky English]] for assistance in moving a large sum of money via their bank accounts or by presenting themselves as legal heirs to it. The reason given for the contact varies, but typically the money is in a sealed account, locked trust fund, and so on, which the sender of the email cannot retrieve directly. The mark is promised a substantial share (usually 10% or more) of the millions in the account once the money is liberated. Another variant is to claim the victim has won a lottery (typically a foreign lottery) they never participated in. Yet another is to claim that a LongLostRelative of the victim living abroad has passed away, [[UnexpectedInheritance leaving a substantial amount]] to the potential victim, provided he/she is willing to pay fees to "speed things along," or fix some sort of legal snafu. Yet another is for a PhonyPsychic to promise that if the victim sends money s/he will become rich/find love/be cured of what ails them/etc.

Once a potential victim swallows the bait, they will soon find out (if it's not already mentioned in the initial email) that they will be required to send some of their own money to complete the transaction; trivial initial payments (at first) to bribe an official, apply processing fees, create new authorization documents -- [[MovingTheGoalposts any reason the scammer can think of]]. There is of course no account with millions waiting to be delivered to the mark: the scammer will stall until the mark refuses to send more funds, at which point the scammer will promptly cut contact. The funds previously sent are all but irretrievable since scammers prefer wire transfers like Western Union, which can be sent anonymously and allow no recovery.

What tends to hook the mark is the initial surge of greed. When this dies down, what keeps them paying is often the SunkCostFallacy -- the sense that having invested so much in the game already, they can't afford to stop now -- but anger and/or a desire to outwit or dupe the "ignorant foreigner" also likely play a part. Since they have been playing a game with less than laudable motives, victims seldom go to the police even when they begin to suspect they are being played. After all, if the story is true, they ''are'' committing bank fraud. Victims may also fail to report to authorities out of embarrassment at falling for the scam, so reported losses to the Nigerian scam are likely lower than the actual total.

It has become increasingly common (starting in 2008 or earlier) for scam messages to be sent out that purport to be sent by an agency (such as the FBI) that can help the victim recover the money lost in a 419 scam or even promise the original imaginary millions can still be reached. For whatever reason, these are characterised by the use of the phrase "Attention: Beneficiary" to address the potential victim. Taking this trend even further, at least one message has been spotted addressed to people who had already been scammed by the promise of money in the first place and then of recovering the money in the second place, promising to set both right. This seems not to have caught on, so there may be a limit to human gullibility after all.

There is yet another variation of the scam that actually sends the victim a check for, say $4,500[[note]]Banks have the option to put a "delayed availability hold" on any check over $5,000, so it will almost never be for more than $5,000[[/note]], which they are told to deposit (not cash) at their local bank. Once that has occurred, the victim is told that the check was for too much money or that the scammer needs some of the money back for unexpected fees, at which point the victim withdraws the requested amount, usually about $500 to $1,000, from their account (hey, the check cleared, so the money is there) and sends it back. This works because while banks are required to make funds available from a deposit after a specific amount of time, usually 24 hours, a check can be found to be fraudulent or the funds from the account unavailable up to three weeks later, at which point the money is pulled back by the bank, the victim usually has to pay a fee, and the scammer gets away with up to $1,000. This is very slowly falling out of favor due to faster check verification procedures at banks, but still happens far too often. Prepaid debit cards have become a popular choice for the scam also, due to less stringent verifications.

Despite being relatively straightforward and often a case of NamesTheSame, not to mention usually being filled with RougeAnglesOfSatin, WantonCrueltyToTheCommonComma, and DelusionsOfEloquence, hundreds of thousands of people around the world have fallen victim to such scams. (The poor use of language can be a deliberate tactic to lull the recipient into a sense of superiority, though the ones supposedly sent by the UN or FBI are just as badly written, and another explanation is that the scammers only ''want'' the most gullible and unobservant people to buy it in the first place, so they don't have to waste resources in being in contact with lots of people who might see through it before the end.) As a result, Nigeria has a very dire reputation amongst some countries and investors. The problem is so bad that it is seriously affecting investment opportunities within Nigeria. The Nigerian government has countered with the statement that it is not just Nigerian nationals who are responsible for such 419 scams, but rather, people masquerading as Nigerians due to its terrible reputation with other countries abroad (why a scammer would pretend to come from a known scammer hideout would need some explanation; one motive invoked is, again, to weed out suspicious people so only the most gullible will answer, reducing risk for the scammer).

The prevalence of the 419 scam has provided juicy opportunities for "scam baiters," who purposefully pretend to fall for the scam and then force the scammer to do time-wasting/embarrassing things in the hopes of distracting them from actual victims.

A variation of the scam involves the target being baited to the scammer's country to finish the operation, then kidnapping and ransoming them.

Compare the SpanishPrisoner scam; the 419 Scam is similar, but it is rarely used to drive the plot of a work like the SpanishPrisoner scam is, and is always facilitated by TheInternet.

The "Nigerian" variant is ''not quite'' a DeadHorseTrope yet; if revelations on scambaiter and British football forums are anything to go by, as a measure of public opinion. Recently, the 419 scam has been spotted with Syria as the country of origin, which is unfortunately plausible as the current civil war continues. Stereotypes regarding the Middle East (oil, sheiks, etc.) and reports of defectors from the Assad regime may lure the already-susceptible even faster. Also, bizarrely, the UnitedKingdom and UsefulNotes/TheUnitedStates are also responsible for this scam. Although ''most'' missives of this nature come to prospective marks as emails, the scam has been around for ''much'' [[OlderThanTheyThink longer than that]], coming as snail-mail. (Some scammers ''do'' still send them as snail-mail, or a similar phone call, particularly to [[http://fraud.org/learn/older-adult-fraud/they-can-t-hang-up elderly people]] who may not use email.) It is sadly quite common for 419 scams to be created in {{UsefulNotes/India}} as shown by scambaiters; the country is also the origin of [[OperatorFromIndia tech support]] scams which get frequently baited and the calls recorded and put on Website/YouTube as once done even by Joel of ''{{WebVideo/Vinesauce}}''.

And no, Nigeria does not have a prince or any kind of official royal family. It does have [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Nigerian_traditional_states some powerless-if-prominent remnants of former tribal monarchies]], but Nigeria has been a federal republic since 1963. The only princes Nigeria has ever had were [[UsefulNotes/TheHouseOfWindsor Philip, Charles, and Andrew]], when the country was a [[UsefulNotes/TheCommonwealth Commonwealth Realm]] 1960-63, with UsefulNotes/HMTheQueen as head of state.

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The advance fee fraud, or known colloquially as the 419 scam after section 419 of the Nigerian criminal code, '''419 scam''', is a form of internet Internet fraud commonly associated with nationals of the UsefulNotes/{{Nigeria}}n state.

It typically takes the form of
UsefulNotes/{{Nigeria}}. The character is contacted by someone under a false identity contacting a member of the public and asking them in [[{{Engrish}} who claims (in [[DelusionsOfEloquence suspiciously shaky English]] for assistance in moving English]]) to have a large sum of money via their bank accounts or by presenting themselves as legal heirs to it. The reason given which is rightfully his but which he cannot access for the contact varies, but typically the money is in a sealed various reasons (sealed account, locked trust fund, etc.), and so on, which he needs the sender of the email cannot retrieve directly. The mark is promised mark's help to be able to access it. If he helps out, he'll get a substantial share (usually 10% or more) of the money, which could be millions in of dollars. To do this, the scammer typically needs the mark's own bank account once to help him transfer the money is liberated. Another variant is to claim the victim has won a lottery (typically a foreign lottery) they never participated in. Yet another is to claim that a LongLostRelative of the victim living abroad has passed away, [[UnexpectedInheritance leaving a substantial amount]] to the potential victim, provided he/she is willing to pay fees to "speed things along," or fix some sort of legal snafu. Yet another is for a PhonyPsychic to promise that if the victim sends money s/he will become rich/find love/be cured of what ails them/etc.

Once a potential victim swallows the bait, they will soon find out (if it's not already mentioned in the initial email) that they will be required to send
money, and he needs some of their the mark's own money in advance to complete help authorize the transaction; trivial initial payments (at first) to transfer, bribe an official, apply processing fees, create new authorization documents -- [[MovingTheGoalposts any reason officials, or do anything else the scammer can think of]]. There is of course no account with millions waiting to be delivered to the mark: the scammer will stall until the mark refuses to send more funds, at which point the scammer will promptly cut contact. The funds previously sent are all but irretrievable since scammers prefer wire transfers like Western Union, which can be sent anonymously and allow no recovery.

What tends to hook the mark is the initial surge of greed. When this dies down, what keeps them paying is often the SunkCostFallacy -- the sense that having invested so much in the game already, they can't afford to stop now -- but anger and/or a desire to outwit or dupe the "ignorant foreigner" also likely play a part. Since they have been playing a game with less than laudable motives, victims seldom go to the police even when they begin to suspect they are being played. After all, if the story is true, they ''are'' committing bank fraud. Victims may also fail to report to authorities out of embarrassment at falling for the scam, so reported losses to the Nigerian scam are likely lower than the actual total.

It has become increasingly common (starting in 2008 or earlier) for scam messages to be sent out that purport to be sent by an agency (such as the FBI) that can help the victim recover
of. But the money lost in a 419 scam or even promise the original imaginary millions can still be reached. For whatever reason, these are characterised by the use of the phrase "Attention: Beneficiary" to address the potential victim. Taking this trend even further, at least one message has been spotted addressed to people who had already been scammed by the promise of money in the first place and then of recovering the money in the second place, promising to set both right. This seems not to have caught on, so there may be a limit to human gullibility after all.

There is yet another variation of the scam that actually sends the victim a check for, say $4,500[[note]]Banks have the option to put a "delayed availability hold" on any check over $5,000, so it will almost never be for more than $5,000[[/note]], which they are told to deposit (not cash) at their local bank. Once that has occurred, the victim is told that the check was for too much money or that the scammer needs some of the money back for unexpected fees, at which point the victim withdraws the requested amount, usually about $500 to $1,000, from their account (hey, the check cleared, so the money is there) and sends it back. This works because while banks are required to make funds available from a deposit after a specific amount of time, usually 24 hours, a check can be found to be fraudulent or the funds from the account unavailable up to three weeks later, at which point the money is pulled back by the bank, the victim usually has to pay a fee, and
doesn't exist; once the scammer gets away with up to $1,000. This is very slowly falling out of favor due to faster check verification procedures at banks, but still happens far too often. Prepaid debit cards have become a popular choice for the scam also, due mark's money or access to less stringent verifications.

Despite being relatively straightforward and often a case of NamesTheSame, not to mention usually being filled with RougeAnglesOfSatin, WantonCrueltyToTheCommonComma, and DelusionsOfEloquence, hundreds of thousands of people around the world have fallen victim to such scams. (The poor use of language can be a deliberate tactic to lull the recipient into a sense of superiority, though the ones supposedly sent by the UN or FBI are just as badly written, and another explanation is that the scammers only ''want'' the most gullible and unobservant people to buy it in the first place, so they don't have to waste resources in being in contact with lots of people who might see through it before the end.) As a result, Nigeria has a very dire reputation amongst some countries and investors. The problem is so bad that it is seriously affecting investment opportunities within Nigeria. The Nigerian government has countered with the statement that it is not just Nigerian nationals who are responsible for such 419 scams, but rather, people masquerading as Nigerians due to its terrible reputation with other countries abroad (why a scammer would pretend to come from a known scammer hideout would need some explanation; one motive invoked is, again, to weed out suspicious people so only the most gullible will answer, reducing risk for the scammer).

The prevalence of the 419 scam has provided juicy opportunities for "scam baiters," who purposefully pretend to fall for the scam and then force the scammer to do time-wasting/embarrassing things in the hopes of distracting them from actual victims.

A variation of the scam involves the target being baited to the scammer's country to finish the operation, then kidnapping and ransoming them.

Compare
his bank account, he cuts off all contact. It's basically the SpanishPrisoner scam; scam for the 419 Scam is similar, but it is rarely Internet age.

As a trope, though, it's not usually
used as a way to drive the overall plot of a work like the SpanishPrisoner scam is, is; instead, it usually goes to show how a stupid or gullible a character is for falling for it. The subversion would thus take the form of the money being real and is always facilitated by TheInternet.

The "Nigerian" variant is ''not quite'' a DeadHorseTrope yet; if revelations on scambaiter and British football forums are anything to go by, as a measure of public opinion. Recently,
the 419 scam has been spotted with Syria as other characters being the country of origin, which is unfortunately plausible as the current civil war continues. Stereotypes regarding the Middle East (oil, sheiks, etc.) and reports of defectors from the Assad regime may lure the already-susceptible even faster. Also, bizarrely, the UnitedKingdom and UsefulNotes/TheUnitedStates are also responsible fools for this scam. Although ''most'' missives of this nature come being too cynical to prospective marks as emails, the scam has been around for ''much'' [[OlderThanTheyThink longer than that]], coming as snail-mail. (Some scammers ''do'' still send them as snail-mail, or help out a similar phone call, poor Nigerian prince. A particularly to [[http://fraud.org/learn/older-adult-fraud/they-can-t-hang-up elderly people]] clever character might become a "scambaiter", who may not use email.) It is sadly quite common pretends to fall for 419 the scam and strings the scammer along until he gets him into a humiliating or compromising situation.

In RealLife, the term "419 scam" derives from the relevant section of the Nigerian criminal code; however, it's used to refer to all
scams of this kind, even when they don't involve Nigeria or bank accounts at all. The RealLife workings of this trope are explained in greater detail on the [[Analysis/FourOneNineScam Analysis page]]. But to be created in {{UsefulNotes/India}} as shown by scambaiters; the country a trope, it helps to be a shorthand, and that's why it nearly always involves a Nigerian with a big bank account he can't access. This Nigerian is also often a prince, in spite of the origin of [[OperatorFromIndia tech support]] scams which get frequently baited and the calls recorded and put on Website/YouTube as once done even by Joel of ''{{WebVideo/Vinesauce}}''.

And no,
fact that Nigeria does not have is a prince or any kind of official royal family. It does have [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Nigerian_traditional_states some powerless-if-prominent remnants of former tribal monarchies]], but Nigeria has been a federal republic since 1963. The only princes Nigeria has ever had were [[UsefulNotes/TheHouseOfWindsor Philip, Charles, and Andrew]], when not a monarchy (not that the country was a [[UsefulNotes/TheCommonwealth Commonwealth Realm]] 1960-63, with UsefulNotes/HMTheQueen as head of state.mark would be expected to know this).



* Manages to reach ''Equestria'' in [[http://www.fimfiction.net/story/109516/dear-friend Dear Friend,]] within the [[Fanfic/TriptychContinuum Triptych Continuum]]. Spike fires off a series of ersatz scrolls after ingesting some "griffon-made canned lunch meat", one of which is clearly based on a classic 419. It involves the previously-unsuspected son of Sombra, twenty million bits deposited in Ponyville, and a request to help free the money so it can be used for retaking the homeland after the actions of the maniacal Preencess Celestia and the knownownown insane killer unicorn, Twilight Sparkle. (The scroll is filled with similar errors, including 'horsepital' and 'proponysal'.) And just to top it off, it's signed "Sucker Bet".
* In the works of Creator/AAPessimal, the Literature/{{Discworld}} equivalent of this scam involves a bogus clacks message purportedly from a [[DarkestAfrica Howondaland]] noble. This despite them not even ''having'' the clacks in Howondaland, as Commander Vimes points out in ''The Civilian Assistant''.

to:

* Manages to reach ''Equestria'' in [[http://www.''[[http://www.fimfiction.net/story/109516/dear-friend Dear Friend,]] Friend]]'', within the [[Fanfic/TriptychContinuum Triptych Continuum]]. Spike fires off a series of ersatz scrolls after ingesting some "griffon-made canned lunch meat", one of which is clearly based on a classic 419. It involves the previously-unsuspected son of Sombra, twenty million bits deposited in Ponyville, and a request to help free the money so it can be used for retaking the homeland after the actions of the maniacal Preencess Celestia and the knownownown insane killer unicorn, Twilight Sparkle. (The scroll is filled with similar errors, including 'horsepital' "horsepital" and 'proponysal'."proponysal".) And just to top it off, it's signed "Sucker Bet".
* In the works of Creator/AAPessimal, the Literature/{{Discworld}} ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' equivalent of this scam involves a bogus clacks message purportedly from a [[DarkestAfrica Howondaland]] noble. This despite them not even ''having'' the clacks in Howondaland, as Commander Vimes points out in ''The Civilian Assistant''.



* Parodied in ''Film/{{Freeloaders}}'' It turns out the Nigerian prince that asked Benny for money is 100% legit and shows up at the end of the movie as a DeusExMachina handing Benny his share of the inheritance $38 million, thus allowing Benny to buy the mansion that he and his friends were crashing at instead of being forced onto the streets thus resolving the plot.
* There is a direct-to-DVD film called ''Film/EZMoney'' that is based around this - the tagline of the film is "The Nigerian e-mail scam gets scammed."

to:

* Parodied in ''Film/{{Freeloaders}}'' It ''Film/{{Freeloaders}}'', where it turns out the Nigerian prince that asked Benny for money is 100% legit and shows up at the end of the movie as a DeusExMachina DeusExMachina, handing Benny his share of the inheritance -- $38 million, thus allowing which allows Benny to buy the mansion that he and his friends were crashing at instead of being forced onto the streets streets, thus resolving the plot.
* There is a The direct-to-DVD film called ''Film/EZMoney'' that is based around this - this; the film's tagline of the film is "The Nigerian e-mail scam gets scammed."



* In "Our Man in Geneva Wins a Million Euros" by PetinaGappah, the protagonist falls for one of these scams. Less usually, both the victim and the scammer are people of African origin living in Europe.
* In ''[[Literature/MonsterHunterInternational Monster Hunter Vendetta]]'', this and other internet scams are mentioned as being sent by real trolls, as in the mythical creatures otherwise known for harassing goats trying to cross bridges.
* The protagonist of ''Zoo City'' creates these scams to pay off her remaining debts from her junkie days. [[spoiler:When she's finally out of debt, she informs all her remaining victims that it's a fraud, then falsely implicates her ex-boyfriend (whom she despises) in running the scam.]]
* The epilogue of ''Literature/HaltingState'' features an apparant 419 Scam email addressed to the book's villain. [[spoiler: Given what we know at the end of the book, the email could be taken at face value, indicating that the villain stashed his ill-gotten gains in a Nigerian bank.]]
* A book called ''DeleteThisAtYourPeril'' in which Bob Servant baits internet scammers, including a few attempted 419s from Africa. After getting an offer from to assist in transfering money from a dead African tribal chief in return for a share of the monkey, Servant haggles for payment with talking lions and singing leopards.
* Bob Howard of ''Literature/TheLaundryFiles'' recalls in a footnote the one time he decided to respond to one of the innumerable 419 messages he gets in his inbox. [[NoodleIncident He doesn't go into much detail]], aside from noting that Laundry Internal Security were less than amused, and made him give back their bank.

to:

* In "Our ''Our Man in Geneva Wins a Million Euros" Euros'' by PetinaGappah, the protagonist falls for one of these scams. Less usually, typically, both the victim and the scammer are people of African origin living in Europe.
* In ''[[Literature/MonsterHunterInternational Monster Hunter Vendetta]]'', this and other internet Internet scams are mentioned as being sent by real trolls, as in the [[OurTrollsAreDifferent actual mythical creatures otherwise known for harassing goats trying to cross bridges.
trolls]].
* The protagonist of ''Zoo City'' ''Literature/ZooCity'' creates these scams to pay off her remaining debts from her junkie days. [[spoiler:When she's finally out of debt, she informs all her remaining victims that it's a fraud, then falsely implicates her ex-boyfriend (whom she despises) in running the scam.]]
* The epilogue of ''Literature/HaltingState'' features an apparant 419 Scam scam email addressed to the book's villain. [[spoiler: Given [[spoiler:Given what we know at the end of the book, the email could be taken at face value, indicating that the villain stashed his ill-gotten gains in a Nigerian bank.]]
* A book called ''DeleteThisAtYourPeril'' in which ''Literature/DeleteThisAtYourPeril'' features Bob Servant baits internet baiting Internet scammers, including a few attempted 419s from Africa. After getting an offer from to assist in transfering transferring money from a dead African tribal chief in return for a share of the monkey, Servant haggles for payment with talking lions and singing leopards.
* Bob Howard of ''Literature/TheLaundryFiles'' recalls in a footnote the one time he decided to respond to one of the innumerable 419 messages he gets in his inbox. [[NoodleIncident He doesn't go into much detail]], aside from noting that Laundry Internal Security were less than amused, amused and made him give back their bank.



* The ''Series/VeronicaMars'' episode "[[ShoutOut The Wrath of Con]]" features two college students pulling off a scam based on this one in order to raise money for the video game they're making. The "sealed account" is the students' trust fund.
* In an early episode of ''Series/ThirtyRock'', Tracy Jordan asks his entourage if they remembered the Nigerian prince who needed his help. He then nonchalantly informs them he recently received the money that the prince had offered as reward for the help, and is now wondering what to use it for.

to:

* The ''Series/VeronicaMars'' episode "[[ShoutOut The Wrath of Con]]" features two college students pulling off a scam based on this one in order to raise money for the video game they're making. The "sealed account" is the students' trust fund.
* In an early episode of ''Series/ThirtyRock'', Tracy Jordan asks his entourage if they remembered the Nigerian prince who needed his help. He then nonchalantly informs them mentions that he recently received the actual money that the from a Nigerian prince had offered as reward for the help, he agreed to help out, and is now he's wondering what to use it for.



* A sketch on ''Series/ThatMitchellAndWebbLook'' had three wealthy brothers phoning up members of the public to give them a free "''massive'' yacht," provided they paid off a few legal fees. Naturally they were quite confused that nobody was interested in their free yachts despite their "warm and reassuring" voices and the insignificance of the legal fees when compared to the value of a ''massive'' yacht.
* Invoked in the pilot episode of ''Series/{{Leverage}}'', duly titled "The Nigerian Job." The mark is told that he's receiving an offer for a contract with the Nigerian government, but is suspicious in part because "it's like those email scams with Nigerian bank fraud letters." [[spoiler:Which was exactly what Nate wanted him to think. In fact, the men the mark met really ''were'' Nigerian officials, and the mark ends up in serious hot water with the FBI.]]
* Michael Scott on ''TheOffice'' has been mentioned to support "about twenty Nigerian princesses".
* The Belgian series ''Series/{{Basta}}'' had an episode in which a bunch of (real) 419 scammers were extensively trolled.
* One episode of ''Series/{{Castle}}'' had a con artist as the BodyOfTheWeek. While investigating his background the team discovered that he had received an e-mail for a FourOneNineScam and proceeded to scam the scammer out of ten grand.
* Played with in ''Series/{{Community}}''. Abed's internet friend Toby is a banker who works in Nigeria. He had financial difficulties so Abed sent him 700 pounds and a plane ticket. Britta is about to break the news to Abed that he was scammed when Toby shows up and gives Abed back his money. He then complains that of all the people he contacted, only Abed was willing to help him.
* In ''Series/TheBigBangTheory'' when Sheldon gets all his items hijacked from his ''WorldOfWarcraft'' account by a hacker, Raj finds someone online "from Nigeria" who tells Raj that he can retrieve all the items "for a fee."
* In ''Series/OneThousandWaysToDie'' a Nigerian con artist scams a poor schmuck into giving him his whole life savings. When the victim ultimately realizes he was scammed, he angrily tracks down the con artist and ends up accidentally killing him by [[EyeScream driving a door hook into the con artist's eye]].
* ''Series/DrPhil'' has had people who fell for these scams on the show. One example included a woman who fell in love with a Nigerian scam artist who asked her for thousands of dollars. The man claimed to be a veteran and fed her all kinds of information that turned out to be false.
* ''Series/PersonOfInterest'' turned this into a multi level MuggingTheMonster. Some gangsters tried to pull this on Leon Tao. However, since he's a very skilled Forensics Accountant, he was able to steal from them. They were unamused and showed up to kill him, and to his immense surprise were actually Nigerian. Unfortunately for them, he's a ([[ButtMonkey recurring number]]) on Team Machine, so Reese shows up to save him.
* In Series/BrooklynNineNine, Jake is astonished to learn dim-witted fellow detective Sully has fallen for over twenty such scams.
* In the 7th Episode of the 5th Season of ''Series/MalcolmInTheMiddle'', Reese mentions he was "gonna invest [his money] with this Nigerian General whose been sending [him] emails."
* In the tenth and final episode of the first season of ''Series/BetterCallSaul'', during the scams Jimmy and Marco are pulling, Jimmy tells one victim that there is a 27-year-old Nigerian prince named Idi Abbassi who is worth "conservatively, 400 million dollars." Unfortunately for this prince, the dictatorship of Equatorial Uqbar Orbis is detaining him on trumped-up charges; the Abbassi family will reward whoever helps them get their boy back, but the 'hitch' is that the banks have frozen their assets.
* An arc in ''Series/TheNightShift'' shows Olafur falling for one, and continuing believing in it despite everyone around him pointing out that it's a scam. The scam artist eventually shows up at Olafur's workplace, having already flown to Iceland with Olafur's money, and Daniel gets him arrested.
* While hosting ''[[Series/SaturdayNightLive SNL]]'' in 2008, Creator/AnneHathaway joked about her ex-boyfriend, Raffaello Follieri, going to prison for fraud, then gushes about her new boyfriend, who she met on the internet, a Nigerian prince.

to:

* A sketch on ''Series/ThatMitchellAndWebbLook'' had three wealthy brothers phoning up members of the public to give them a free "''massive'' yacht," provided they paid off a few legal fees. Naturally Naturally, they were quite confused that nobody was interested in their free yachts despite their "warm and reassuring" voices and the insignificance of the legal fees when compared to the value of a ''massive'' yacht.
* Invoked in the pilot episode of ''Series/{{Leverage}}'', duly titled "The Nigerian Job." Job". The mark is told that he's receiving an offer for a contract with the Nigerian government, but is suspicious in part because "it's like those email scams with Nigerian bank fraud letters." [[spoiler:Which was exactly what Nate wanted him to think. In fact, the men the mark met really ''were'' Nigerian officials, and the mark ends up in serious hot water with the FBI.]]
* Michael Scott on ''TheOffice'' ''Series/TheOffice'' has been mentioned to support "about twenty Nigerian princesses".
* The Belgian series ''Series/{{Basta}}'' had an episode in which a bunch of (real) real 419 scammers were extensively trolled.
* One episode of ''Series/{{Castle}}'' had a con artist as the BodyOfTheWeek. While investigating his background background, the team discovered that he had received an a 419 scam e-mail for a FourOneNineScam and proceeded to scam the scammer out of ten grand.
* Played with in ''Series/{{Community}}''. ''Series/{{Community}}'': Abed's internet friend Toby is a banker who works in Nigeria. He had financial difficulties difficulties, so Abed sent him 700 pounds and a plane ticket. Britta is about to break the news to Abed that he was scammed scammed, when Toby shows up and gives Abed back his money. He then complains that of all the people he contacted, only Abed was willing to help him.
* In ''Series/TheBigBangTheory'' when ''Series/TheBigBangTheory'', Sheldon gets all his items hijacked from his ''WorldOfWarcraft'' account by a hacker, and Raj finds someone online "from Nigeria" who tells Raj claims that he can retrieve all the items "for a fee."
* In ''Series/OneThousandWaysToDie'' ''Series/OneThousandWaysToDie'', a Nigerian con artist scams a poor schmuck into giving him his whole life savings. When the victim ultimately realizes he was scammed, he angrily tracks down the con artist and ends up accidentally killing him by [[EyeScream driving a door hook into the con artist's eye]].
* ''Series/DrPhil'' has had people who fell for these scams on the show. One example included was a woman who fell in love with a Nigerian scam artist who asked her for thousands of dollars. The man claimed to be a veteran and fed her all kinds of information that turned out to be false.
* ''Series/PersonOfInterest'' turned this into a multi level multi-level MuggingTheMonster. Some gangsters tried to pull this on Leon Tao. However, since he's a very skilled Forensics Accountant, forensic accountant, he was able to steal from them. They were unamused and showed up to kill him, and to his immense surprise were actually Nigerian. Unfortunately for them, he's a ([[ButtMonkey recurring number]]) on Team Machine, so Reese shows up to save him.
* In Series/BrooklynNineNine, ''Series/BrooklynNineNine'', Jake is astonished to learn that his dim-witted fellow detective Sully has fallen for over twenty such scams.
* In the 7th Episode episode of the 5th Season season of ''Series/MalcolmInTheMiddle'', Reese mentions he was "gonna invest [his money] with this Nigerian General whose general who's been sending [him] emails."
* In the tenth and final episode of the first season of ''Series/BetterCallSaul'', during the scams Jimmy and Marco are pulling, Jimmy tells one victim that there is a 27-year-old Nigerian prince named Idi Abbassi who is worth "conservatively, 400 million dollars." Unfortunately for this prince, the dictatorship of [[{{Bulungi}} Equatorial Uqbar Orbis Orbis]] is detaining him on trumped-up charges; the Abbassi family will reward whoever whomever helps them get their boy back, but the 'hitch' "hitch" is that the banks have frozen their assets.
* An arc in ''Series/TheNightShift'' shows Olafur falling for one, one and continuing believing to believe in it despite everyone around him pointing out that it's a scam. The scam artist eventually shows up at Olafur's workplace, having already flown to Iceland with Olafur's money, and Daniel gets him arrested.
* While hosting ''[[Series/SaturdayNightLive SNL]]'' in 2008, Creator/AnneHathaway joked about her ex-boyfriend, Raffaello Follieri, going to prison for fraud, then gushes about her new boyfriend, who a Nigerian prince whom she met on the internet, a Nigerian prince.Internet.



* [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SyebQOUn0YI I Go Chop Your Dollar]] is a taunting song from the perspective of the perpetrator of such a scam, and even includes the line "419 is just a game".
** Just to clarify, a "dollarchop" is a term used by scammers to describe the practice of scammer #1 picking up the money a victim had sent sent to scammer #2, without #1 being in on the deal. In other words, that song is actually a scammer taunting other scammers.
* The song by MCFrontalot in the page quote. See also [[http://frontalot.com/index.php/content.php?page=lyrics&lyricid=19 there.]]

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* [[http://www."[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SyebQOUn0YI I Go Chop Your Dollar]] Dollar]]" is a taunting song from the perspective of the perpetrator a scammer of such a scam, and even includes the line "419 is just a game".
** Just to clarify,
other 419 scammers; a "dollarchop" is a term used by scammers refers to describe the practice of one scammer #1 picking up swooping in to intercept the money a victim had sent sent to another scammer #2, without #1 being in on had bilked from the deal. In other words, that song naïve mark. It even includes the line, "419 is actually just a scammer taunting other scammers.
game."
* The song by MCFrontalot in the page quote.quote is about someone who's a little too eager to get a 419 email. See also [[http://frontalot.com/index.php/content.php?page=lyrics&lyricid=19 there.here.]]



-->I bought a second-hand toaster\\

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-->I -->''I bought a second-hand toaster\\



Well, he sure ''sounded'' legit.

to:

Well, he sure ''sounded'' legit.''



* The game ''VisualNovel/RePrinceOfNigeria'' is mainly about a girl who does not get that she was being scammed and even ended up falling in love with this supposed "Prince", played for laughs.
* ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'' gives Shepard an e-mail account to receive assorted plot-related messages and information, but which also suffers from the usual amount of standard spam e-mail. Apparently in the ''Franchise/MassEffect'' verse the standard spiel involves [[{{Precursors}} Prothean]] artifacts from [[GhostPlanet Ilos]] being stuck in customs, with a cut of the profits offered to the one who puts up the front money required to get them cleared.
* Hawke in ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'' gets one as well, in the form of an actual letter which is ostensibly from the Seneschal serving Starkhaven's recently-overthrown Vael family. He promises a sum of 10,000 sovereigns if Hawke were to open a bank account in Antiva with 100 sovereigns deposited to make the account viable. Incidentally, the last son of said Vael family is a (DownloadableContent) ''party member''.
* Bioware loves this trope. It shows up again in MassEffecAndromeda, where it seems to be an import from the Milky Way and targets a party member. Based on conversations you can hear, they may have fallen for it.
* You can find some in computer mailboxes in ''VideoGame/DeusExHumanRevolution'' (but apparently, antispam technology progressed, since you NEVER find them in office computers, only home [=PCs=]).
** If you look around in Upper Hengsha, you can actually find one on one of the computers. Another computer contains an email lamenting the fact that an employee was stupid enough to give out a corporate email to scammers, and that now the network admin has to go through and change ''all'' the security protocols to prevent any kind of spyware intrusion.
** Hilariously, the spam email shows up all over the game, [[spoiler:even in places that it really should not, including the top secret Omega Ranch. The Belltower commander of Omega Ranch is partly enraged that their security was breached by a Nigerian scammer and partly confused that such a thing is even possible. Some easily missed information leads to the conclusion that the Nigerian scam email is actually a self-propagating data collection program, explaining how it ends up everywhere.]]

to:

* The game ''VisualNovel/RePrinceOfNigeria'' is mainly about a girl who does not get that she was is being scammed and even ended ends up falling in love with this supposed "Prince", played for laughs.
* ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'' gives Shepard an e-mail account to receive assorted plot-related messages and information, but which also suffers from the usual amount of standard spam e-mail. Apparently in the ''Franchise/MassEffect'' verse verse, the standard spiel involves [[{{Precursors}} Prothean]] artifacts from [[GhostPlanet Ilos]] being stuck in customs, with a cut of the profits offered to the one who puts up the front money required to get them cleared.
cleared. It shows up again in ''VideoGame/MassEffectAndromeda'', where it seems to be an import from the Milky Way and targets a party member. Based on conversations you can hear, they may have fallen for it.
* Hawke in ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'' gets one as well, in the form of an actual letter which is ostensibly from the Seneschal serving Starkhaven's recently-overthrown Vael family. He promises a sum of 10,000 sovereigns if Hawke were to open a bank account in Antiva with 100 sovereigns deposited to make the account viable. Incidentally, the last son of said Vael family is a (DownloadableContent) ''party member''.
* Bioware loves this trope. It shows up again in MassEffecAndromeda, where it seems to be an import from the Milky Way and targets a party member. Based on conversations you can hear, they may have fallen for it.
* You can find some 419 emails in computer mailboxes in ''VideoGame/DeusExHumanRevolution'' (but apparently, antispam technology progressed, since you NEVER find them in office computers, ''VideoGame/DeusExHumanRevolution''; although they mostly only appear in home [=PCs=]).
** If you look around in Upper Hengsha,
[=PCs=], there are a few on the computers of offices and institutions, and you can actually even find one on one of the computers. Another computer contains an email other emails lamenting how the fact that an employee was stupid enough spammers were able to give out get hold of a corporate email to scammers, and that now the network admin has to go through and change ''all'' the security protocols to prevent any kind of spyware intrusion.
** Hilariously, the spam email shows up all over the game, [[spoiler:even
account [[spoiler:including one instance in places that it really should not, including the top secret Omega Ranch. The Belltower commander of Omega Ranch is partly enraged that their security was breached by a Nigerian scammer and partly confused that such a thing is even possible. Some easily missed information leads to the conclusion that the Nigerian scam email is actually a self-propagating data collection program, explaining how it ends up everywhere.Ranch.]]



* ''Webcomic/PennyArcade'' [[http://penny-arcade.com/comic/2003/03/28 here.]]
* [[http://www.joyoftech.com/joyoftech/joyimages/898.gif This strip]] of the webcomic ''TheJoyOfTech''.

to:

* In [[http://penny-arcade.com/comic/2003/03/28 this]] ''Webcomic/PennyArcade'' [[http://penny-arcade.com/comic/2003/03/28 here.]]
comic, Gabe announces his intent to fly to Holland to meet a Swazi princess he met on the Internet and whose bank account she needs to retrieve her vast fortune:
-->'''Tycho:''' And you're not worried that Nigerian thugs are going to cut off your balls.\\
'''Gabe:''' I'm worried I won't be able to find the bathrooms. Everything's gonna be in Hollish.
* In [[http://www.joyoftech.com/joyoftech/joyimages/898.gif This this strip]] of the webcomic ''TheJoyOfTech''.''TheJoyOfTech'', a bank employee encounters a 419 victim and opportunistically asks for a bank fee of her own, which he has to give to her personally.



** There is, of course, the "Nigerian Finance Minister" theme, which places the ''actual'' guy in charge of Nigerian finance in the position these letters tend to spell out. He's genuinely looking to get his money transferred, but his honest plea naturally ends up looking just like the classic scam pitch and getting about the same response. Even when he [[http://www.irregularwebcomic.net/524.html hires William Shakespeare]] to write them.
** There was also a completely separate "Nigerian Prince" scam that tried to pin everything on [[NoCelebritiesWereHarmed totally-not-Steve-Irwin]]. Fortunately Jane Goodall was able to prove in court that not only was he not king of Nigeria, but Nigeria is a republic with no royal family.

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** There is, of course, the The "Nigerian Finance Minister" theme, which theme places the ''actual'' guy in charge of Nigerian finance in the position these letters tend to spell out. He's genuinely looking to get his money transferred, but his honest plea naturally ends up looking just like the classic scam pitch and getting about the same response. Even when he [[http://www.irregularwebcomic.net/524.html hires William Shakespeare]] to write them.
** There was also a A completely separate "Nigerian Prince" scam that tried to pin everything on [[NoCelebritiesWereHarmed totally-not-Steve-Irwin]]. Fortunately Fortunately, Jane Goodall was able to prove in court that not only was he not king of Nigeria, but Nigeria is a republic with no royal family.



* A strip from ''Webcomic/RealLifeComics'' has Greg Dean looking through his email which is full of these scams. The email is asking for a monetary donation because the daughter (or other relation) of the sender is suffering from terminal illness. Except with each scam email he reads, the sickness gets progressively less severe and the asking amount for the donation progressively more, with the last one asking for a $100 donation for a cold.
* ''Webcomic/SluggyFreelance'': Sam is too clever for the scammers: "Aw! Just another scam from some dude claiming to be the Prime Minister of Abscondia trying to drain my bank account! That lame-o doesn't know my account was already drained by the Princess of Scamrobi. But that's OK because she was probably hot."

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* A strip from ''Webcomic/RealLifeComics'' has Greg Dean looking through his email email, which is full of these scams. The email is asking for a monetary donation because the daughter (or other relation) of the sender is suffering from [[SoapOperaDisease some terminal illness.illness]]. Except with each scam email he reads, the sickness gets progressively less severe and the asking amount for the donation progressively more, with the last one asking for a $100 donation for a cold.
* ''Webcomic/SluggyFreelance'': In ''Webcomic/SluggyFreelance'', Sam is too clever for the scammers: "Aw! scammers:
-->"Aw!
Just another scam from some dude claiming to be the Prime Minister of Abscondia trying to drain my bank account! That lame-o doesn't know my account was already drained by the Princess of Scamrobi. But that's OK because she was probably hot."



* ''Webcomic/RustyAndCo'' in its usual DungeonPunk style had Calamitus [[http://rustyandco.com/comic/critical-missives-25/ scammed by one such letter]] in [[FourthWallMailSlot Critical Missives]] after he began to look like a genuine threat rather than a comically incompetent goofball.

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* ''Webcomic/RustyAndCo'' ''Webcomic/RustyAndCo'', in its usual DungeonPunk style style, had Calamitus [[http://rustyandco.com/comic/critical-missives-25/ scammed by one such letter]] in [[FourthWallMailSlot Critical Missives]] after he began to look like a genuine threat rather than a comically incompetent goofball.



* [[http://xkcd.com/1777/ Thix]] ''Webcomic/{{xkcd}}'' strip has an odd example, in that Black Hat Guy is writing one to ''himself'', by hand, ''in his own diary''.

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* [[http://xkcd.com/1777/ Thix]] This]] ''Webcomic/{{xkcd}}'' strip has an odd example, in that Black Hat Guy is writing one to ''himself'', by hand, ''in his own diary''.



* Referenced in the ''Machinima/RedVsBlue'' PSA "Real Life vs. The Internet", comparing getting mail from a mailbox vs. e-mail.
-->'''Simmons''': Pardon me, my friend, but I am Nigerian royalty, and I need you to send me money. Please ignore the fact that I can not spell "Nigerian" or "royalty".

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* Referenced in the ''Machinima/RedVsBlue'' PSA [[PublicServiceAnnouncement PSA]] "Real Life vs. The Internet", comparing getting mail from a mailbox vs. e-mail.
-->'''Simmons''':
e-mail:
-->'''Simmons:'''
Pardon me, my friend, but I am Nigerian royalty, and I need you to send me money. Please ignore the fact that I can not spell "Nigerian" or "royalty".



* ''[[http://web.me.com/normsherman/Site/Podcast/Podcast.html The Drabblecast]]'' hosts the annual Nigerian Scam Spam Contest, the winning one gets emailed out to unsuspecting members of the general public.
* Practically every scam-baiting site out there with a publishing section counts as this:

to:

* ''[[http://web.me.com/normsherman/Site/Podcast/Podcast.html The Drabblecast]]'' hosts the annual Nigerian Scam Spam Contest, Contest; the winning one gets emailed out to unsuspecting members of the general public.
* Practically every scam-baiting site out there with a Many scambaiting sites have publishing section counts as this:sections where scambaiters regale their exploits, including:



* ''Website/SFDebris'' loves to talk about how stupid the Kazon, and particularly Culluh, are on ''Series/StarTrekVoyager''. It reached a zenith of hilarity in the "Basics" review when he mentioned that Culluh is getting frustrated, as he has not heard back from that bank manager in Nigeria.
* In the episode Cherry Bomb of ''WebVideo/FriendshipIsWitchcraft'', Applejack goes out of town to retrieve two free iPod nanos offered through a popup window. As her train is leaving, Pinkie reminds her to "say hi to the Nigerian prince." As everypony turns to her in confusion, she says "What? He owes me money."

to:

* ''Website/SFDebris'' loves to talk about how stupid the Kazon, and particularly Culluh, are on ''Series/StarTrekVoyager''. It reached a zenith of hilarity in the "Basics" review when he mentioned mentions that Culluh is getting frustrated, as he has not heard back from that bank manager in Nigeria.
* In the episode Cherry Bomb "Cherry Bomb" of ''WebVideo/FriendshipIsWitchcraft'', Applejack goes out of town to retrieve two free iPod nanos Nanos offered through a popup window. As her train is leaving, Pinkie reminds her to "say hi to the Nigerian prince." As everypony turns to her in confusion, she says says, "What? He owes me money."



* The first ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'' feature film, ''Bender's Big Score'', centres on a group of scammers who con the Planet Express business and then use that as a base to scam the whole of Earth. [[OnlySaneMan Hermes]] is onto them from the start, but just about every other character falls for it at least once. Eventually [[spoiler: the scammers are defeated by Bender, who claims he's been working the long con all along.]]
** Possibly inverted with Dr. Zoidberg, who by half way through that film appears to have actually received what he was promised from the Nigerian government.
* In ''WesternAnimation/TheVentureBrothers'', Sgt. Hatred hints that falling for one of these might have been the final straw causing his wife to leave him.

to:

* The first ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'' feature film, ''Bender's Big Score'', centres centers on a group of scammers who con the Planet Express business and then use that as a base to scam the whole of Earth. [[OnlySaneMan Hermes]] is onto them from the start, but just about every other character falls for it at least once. Weirdly, Dr. Zoidberg claims halfway through the film that he actually ''did'' get the money. Eventually [[spoiler: the scammers are defeated by Bender, who claims he's been working the long con all along.]]
** Possibly inverted with Dr. Zoidberg, who by half way through that film appears to have actually received what he was promised from the Nigerian government.
* In ''WesternAnimation/TheVentureBrothers'', Sgt. Hatred hints that falling for one of these might have been the final straw causing that caused his wife to leave him.



* In one episode of ''WesternAnimation/SkinnerBoys'' the boys manage to scam villain Obsidian Stone into revealing his current location by [[spoiler: sending him a promise of a million dollar to use in his world conquest schemes and tracing his mail reply]].

to:

* In one episode of ''WesternAnimation/SkinnerBoys'' ''WesternAnimation/SkinnerBoys'', the boys manage to scam villain Obsidian Stone into revealing his current location by [[spoiler: sending him a promise of a million dollar dollars to use in his world conquest schemes and tracing his mail reply]].
9th May '17 10:37:29 PM Cuchulainn
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* While hosting ''[[Series/SaturdayNightLive SNL]]'' in 2008, Creator/AnneHathaway joked about her ex-boyfriend, Raffaello Follieri, going to prison for fraud, then gushes about her new boyfriend, a Nigerian prince.

to:

* While hosting ''[[Series/SaturdayNightLive SNL]]'' in 2008, Creator/AnneHathaway joked about her ex-boyfriend, Raffaello Follieri, going to prison for fraud, then gushes about her new boyfriend, who she met on the internet, a Nigerian prince.
9th May '17 10:37:04 PM Cuchulainn
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Added DiffLines:

* While hosting ''[[Series/SaturdayNightLive SNL]]'' in 2008, Creator/AnneHathaway joked about her ex-boyfriend, Raffaello Follieri, going to prison for fraud, then gushes about her new boyfriend, a Nigerian prince.
3rd Apr '17 8:51:29 AM TheDocCC
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Added DiffLines:

* Bioware loves this trope. It shows up again in MassEffecAndromeda, where it seems to be an import from the Milky Way and targets a party member. Based on conversations you can hear, they may have fallen for it.
11th Mar '17 6:29:50 AM ladylada
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Added DiffLines:

* Nigerian hip hop group [[https://www.discogs.com/artist/286119-419-Squad 419 Squad]] get their name from the scam.
3rd Mar '17 5:17:26 PM AndyLA
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* Right at the first issue of 'Comicbook/GothamCitySirens'', we have Catwoman wondering what Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn did to the money stolen from Hush that she gave them. Ivy's part was sent to a reforestation project; Harley's part, well...

to:

* Right at the first issue of 'Comicbook/GothamCitySirens'', ''Comicbook/GothamCitySirens'', we have Catwoman wondering what Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn did to the money stolen from Hush that she gave them. Ivy's part was sent to a reforestation project; Harley's part, well...
3rd Mar '17 5:09:27 PM AndyLA
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

* Right at the first issue of 'Comicbook/GothamCitySirens'', we have Catwoman wondering what Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn did to the money stolen from Hush that she gave them. Ivy's part was sent to a reforestation project; Harley's part, well...
-->'''Catwoman:''' So I'm right in assuming you're spending the money I gave you as fast and as foolishly as you can.\\
'''Harley:''' What's wrong with splurgin' on a few nice things? Besides, I put some away, made some investments...\\
'''Catwoman:''' Please tell me they didn't involve sending money to a Nigerian prince.\\
'''Harley:''' [[WhatAnIdiot You got his e-mail, too?!]]
10th Feb '17 6:49:42 PM karstovich2
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And no, Nigeria does not have a prince or any kind of official royal family. It does have [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Nigerian_traditional_states some powerless-if-prominent remnants of former tribal monarchies]], but Nigeria has been a federal republic ever since declaring independence from Great Britain in the 1960's.

to:

And no, Nigeria does not have a prince or any kind of official royal family. It does have [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Nigerian_traditional_states some powerless-if-prominent remnants of former tribal monarchies]], but Nigeria has been a federal republic ever since declaring independence from Great Britain in 1963. The only princes Nigeria has ever had were [[UsefulNotes/TheHouseOfWindsor Philip, Charles, and Andrew]], when the 1960's.country was a [[UsefulNotes/TheCommonwealth Commonwealth Realm]] 1960-63, with UsefulNotes/HMTheQueen as head of state.
11th Jan '17 11:28:40 PM HotelCalifornia
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The "Nigerian" variant is ''not quite'' a DeadHorseTrope yet; if revelations on scambaiter and British football forums are anything to go by, as a measure of public opinion. Recently, the 419 scam has been spotted with Syria as the country of origin, which is [[RuleOfCautiousEditingJudgment unfortunately plausible]] as the current civil war continues. Stereotypes regarding the Middle East (oil, sheiks, etc.) and reports of defectors from the Assad regime may lure the already-susceptible even faster. Also, bizarrely, the UnitedKingdom and UsefulNotes/TheUnitedStates are also responsible for this scam. Although ''most'' missives of this nature come to prospective marks as emails, the scam has been around for ''much'' [[OlderThanTheyThink longer than that]], coming as snail-mail. (Some scammers ''do'' still send them as snail-mail, or a similar phone call, particularly to [[http://fraud.org/learn/older-adult-fraud/they-can-t-hang-up elderly people]] who may not use email.) It is sadly quite common for 419 scams to be created in {{UsefulNotes/India}} as shown by scambaiters; the country is also the origin of [[OperatorFromIndia tech support]] scams which get frequently baited and the calls recorded and put on Website/YouTube as once done even by Joel of ''{{WebVideo/Vinesauce}}''.

to:

The "Nigerian" variant is ''not quite'' a DeadHorseTrope yet; if revelations on scambaiter and British football forums are anything to go by, as a measure of public opinion. Recently, the 419 scam has been spotted with Syria as the country of origin, which is [[RuleOfCautiousEditingJudgment unfortunately plausible]] plausible as the current civil war continues. Stereotypes regarding the Middle East (oil, sheiks, etc.) and reports of defectors from the Assad regime may lure the already-susceptible even faster. Also, bizarrely, the UnitedKingdom and UsefulNotes/TheUnitedStates are also responsible for this scam. Although ''most'' missives of this nature come to prospective marks as emails, the scam has been around for ''much'' [[OlderThanTheyThink longer than that]], coming as snail-mail. (Some scammers ''do'' still send them as snail-mail, or a similar phone call, particularly to [[http://fraud.org/learn/older-adult-fraud/they-can-t-hang-up elderly people]] who may not use email.) It is sadly quite common for 419 scams to be created in {{UsefulNotes/India}} as shown by scambaiters; the country is also the origin of [[OperatorFromIndia tech support]] scams which get frequently baited and the calls recorded and put on Website/YouTube as once done even by Joel of ''{{WebVideo/Vinesauce}}''.
3rd Jan '17 10:02:12 PM Xtifr
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* Bob Howard of [[Literature/TheLaundrySeries the Laundry]] recalls in a footnote the one time he decided to respond to one of the innumerable 419 messages he gets in his inbox. [[NoodleIncident He doesn't go into much detail]], aside from noting that Laundry Internal Security were less than amused, and made him give back their bank.

to:

* Bob Howard of [[Literature/TheLaundrySeries the Laundry]] ''Literature/TheLaundryFiles'' recalls in a footnote the one time he decided to respond to one of the innumerable 419 messages he gets in his inbox. [[NoodleIncident He doesn't go into much detail]], aside from noting that Laundry Internal Security were less than amused, and made him give back their bank.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.FourOneNineScam