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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 Vivian Douglas <>
Date: Tue, 6 Apr 2010 18:28:29 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Information

Instruction I received from the President,I was told to complete all
contractors payment.To this effect the management of the Central Bank has
decided to pay $10.5m USD to our honourable contractors through a means called
diplomatic courirer service delivery.This further explains that your contract
funds shall packaged through Courier Company delivered to your doorstep.
Your Name:-
(2)Home Address:-
(3)Your Cell
Vivian Douglas.

Anti-fraud resources: