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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: "SA Online Lottery" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Mon, 3 Mar 2014 14:37:26 +0200
Subject: Re: Your Email Address Has Brought You Good Luck

South Africa National Lottery
No 8 Madenla street, Sandton
Johannesburg South Africa.
Dear Winner,
This is to inform you that you have won a prize money of Nine hundred Thousand united states dollar only ($900,000.00)for the  month of MARCH 2014 Lottery promotion which is organized by SANATIONAL LOTTERY.
We only select five people every Month as our winners through electronic balloting System without the winner applying, we congratulate you for being one of the people selected. You are to contact the events manager on or before your date of Claim, Winners shall be paid in accordance with his/her Settlement Centre.
Lottery Prize must be claimed no later than 20 days from date of Draw Notification after the Draw date in which Prize has won. Any prize not claimed within this period will be forfeited.
These are your identification numbers:
Batch number.....................YM 09102XN
Ref number.......................YM35447XN
Winning number...................YM09788
These numbers fall within your Location file, you are requested to contact the events manager, send your winning identification numbers to enable them verify your claims.
Name: Mr.James Axel
Tel.: +27768030441
Congratulations once again from all our staffs on your Prize winning.
Yours truly,
Ms. Lilian White

Anti-fraud resources: