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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: Shell United Kingdom <>
Date: Tue, 02 Apr 2013 16:02:28 +0300
Subject: Attn: Winner.

Shell United Kingdom
Shell Centre London, SE1 7NA
Attn: Winner.

Congratulations! The Shell United Kingdom is proud to congratulate you on your success as a winner of the Shell Oil Star Prize in this year's 2013 Oil Star Promotion that was conducted over the Internet with our automated email selecting machine. Your E-mail address emerged as one of the Hundred (100) lucky Email Addresses selected as won in the yearly Promotion (/2013). You have been declared the proud winner of ?2,500,000.00 British Pound Sterling. Five Hundred Thousand Pounds Sterling’s)

Forward the following information below to our Payment Manager

Full Name, ------------------------- ----------------------------
Address, ---------------------- ------------------------------ --
Country, ---------------------- ------------------------------ ---
Age, -------------------------- ------------------------------ ----
Sex, -------------------------- ------------------------------ -----
Occupation, --------------------------- -----------------------
Tel/Fax Number------------------------ ----------------------

Ticket number: 644 79543465 B448056490902
Serial number: 4708-325
File Ref. ILP/HW /mob126

How to claim your winning prize: To receive your claim, contact the Payment Manager.

Mrs. Rebecca Lane

Shell Oil Star Promotion team congratulate you once again on your winning.

Yours Faithfully,
Mr. Ronald Edward
Publicity Manager

Anti-fraud resources: