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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: "equitychambers equitychambers" <>
Date: Sat, 21 Jun 2008 07:45:49 +0100
Subject: Update On Your Lottery Payment.

Juan Hurtado De Mendoza 6D 28044,
Cotonou Republic du Benin


Attention To The Owner Of This Email Address.

Winner in the 2nd category of our Euroafric free Net Lottery Promotional
award draws held February 2008.I am writing in respect to your lotto winning
prize of$715,810.00(Seven hundred and fifteen thousand eight hundred and ten
US Dollars only) which you won through the email-ballot draws in our
Euroafric Lotto Award in 2008 in the second category prize winnings

We wish to inform you that your total prize money of $715,810.00 has been
returned to us by our Lotto claims agent as unclaimed prize after their
initial letter to your address for your payment was not successful.You are
here by requested to contact our Treasury Office through this e-mail
address: for your immediate payment.Our Treasury
officer's name is Steve Morris, so refer this to him and contact him
immediately for your unclaimed lotto prize payment to you.

You should contact our Treasury Officer as directed above for your
payment,and do notify me as soon as you received your payment from our


Dr. David Martin
President; Int'l Lotto Commission

Anti-fraud resources: