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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: "MasterCard Notification" <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 20 Jun 2009 14:54:47 -0700
Subject: -->Important: Update Required<-- From MasterCard/Microsoft

MasterCard / Microsoft Windows Mega Jackpot
FedEx Mail Express. (Co-Sponsors)
London, Liaison Office,
Director Mr. James B. Lakers.
Tel: +44-20-7060-2113 Ext; 2000
Fax: +44-87 0950-3299

For the Last time, we are pleased to notify you of the MasterCard / Microsoft Windows Mega Jackpot (E-MAIL) Sweepstakes result. Please; confirm if you received our previous messages;You have less that 7 days to claim your due award. This promotion is all about promoting the use of (E-MAIL) so take note. Your £6.6, million pounds is still valid for claims.

We received a reduction notice from the Insurance company, please, read and act immediately.

NOTE: Ignore this mail if you are not interested.

Best regards,

Michael Goodman
MasterCard / Microsoft Management Board, Copyright © 1991-2009

Your privacy is important to the MasterCard / Microsoft Windows Mega Jackpot®. Employees of the MasterCard / Microsoft Windows Mega Jackpot® are prohibited from disclosing any information you provide, except as provided by law. No personally identifying information (such as your name, address or phone number) will ever be captured by visiting our Web pages, unless you voluntarily choose to provide it. The National Association of State and Provincial Lotteries recently alerted the MasterCard / Microsoft Windows Mega Jackpot® and every other online Security organizations to get clearance number before having any online promotions or Awards, as there are too many scams going on online. So if by chance you received or you have received any mail of such do not be reluctant to ask for their Clearance number, they are always 14 digits numerical numbers take note. Our clearance number is the E-ticket number: 98005043266 878.

-->Important: Update Required<-- From MasterCard/Microsoft


Anti-fraud resources: