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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: "iKobo Inc." (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 9 Jan 2010 17:15:10 -0800
Subject: DELIVERY-N8W-9S4

Our Ref: IKB/NG/M2F09
Your Ref:

iKobo is a company that specializes in money transfers. With them, you can send money to any country using your Visa or MasterCard. The recipient gets the transfer put onto a secured Visa debit card, which can be used worldwide at ATM locations for cash withdrawals. This debit card, which is reusable, is shipped to the recipient.
As part of our expansion and promotional package for the fiscal year 2009,we are pleased to inform you that your e-mail address was selected to receive this year's grant amount of the sum of $2.8 million US dollars. These funds will be made available to you through an iKobo Visa card.
We have concluded plans to deliver this card to you as soon as possible. Your delivery code is N8W-9S4.

You are to send us the following details:

Please also note that you are to immediately pay the delivery service fees of US$120 so that the card can be delivered to you and as soon as the payment is made you will be given a tracking number to enable you monitor and trail the status of your delivery online.
We look forward to hearing from you soon.
© Copyright 2001-2009 iKobo Inc.

Anti-fraud resources: