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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: "lauren david" <>
Date: Sat, 21 Jun 2008 05:42:36 +0100
Subject: Dear Friend I Need Your Assistance.

Dear Friend I Need Your Assistance.

My name is Sgt. David Lauren. I am an American soldier with Swiss
background, serving in the military with the army's 3rd infantry division.
With a very desperate need for assistance, I have summed up courage to
contact you. I found your contact particulars in an address journal. I am
seeking your kind assistance to move the sum of ( $ 25 million u.s. dollars
) Twenty Five million united states dollars to you, as far as I can be
assured that my share will be safe in your care until I complete my service
here, this is no stolen money, and there are no danger involved.

Source of money:

Some money in various currencies was discovered in barrels at a farmhouse
near one of Saddam's old palaces in Tikrit-Iraq during a rescue operation,
and it was agreed by staff Sgt Kenneth buff and I that some part of this
money be shared among both of us before informing anybody about it since
both of us saw the money first. This was quite an illegal thing to do, but I
tell you what? No compensation can make up for the risk we have taken with
our lives in this hell hole. Of which my brother in-law was killed by a road
side bomb last week. You will find the story of this money on the web
address below;

The above figure was given to me as my share, and to conceal this kind of
money became a problem for me, so with the help of a British contact working
here and his office enjoy some immunity, I was able to get the package out
to a safe location entirely out of trouble spot. He does not know the real
contents of the package, and believes that it belongs to a brithish/american
medical doctor who died in a raid here in Iraq, and before giving up,
trusted me to hand over the package to his family in united states.I have
now found a much secured way of getting the package out of Iraq to your
country for you to pick up, and I will discuss this with you when I am sure
that you are willing to assist me. I want you to tell me how much you will
take from this money for the assistance you will give to me.

One passionate appeal I will make to you is not to discuss this matter with
anybody, should you have reasons to reject this offer, please and please
destroy this message as any leakage of this information will be too bad for
us soldier's here in Iraq. I do not know how long we will remain here, and i
have been shot, wounded and survived two suicide bomb attacks by the special
grace of god, this and other reasons i will mention later has prompted me
to reach out for help, i honestly want this matter to be resolved
immediately, please contact me as soon as possible my only way of
communication is email.Indicate your interest in assisting me as well as
Providing the following information to facilitate the smooth conclusion of
the Transaction.

1) Your Full Name: ----------------------------------

2) Your Address: ------------------------------------

3) Your Telephone Number: ---------------------------

4) Your Fax Number: ---------------------------------

5) Your Mobile Number: ------------------------------

6) The Name of the Closest Airport to your City of

Residence: ------------------------------------------

God Bless You As You Help Out.

Sergeant David Lauren.
Camp MXP-512 Third Infantry Division Unit
Abul Uruj, Baghdad, Iraq.

Anti-fraud resources: