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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: "Award Notification" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Thu, 6 Aug 2009 17:47:17 -0700
Subject: ALERT: Reference Number: NLS 11 EU 2009

ATTN: Lucky Winner

We are pleased to notify you the "Winner" of our Internet Lottery draws. This is a reward program for the patronage of internet services and all email addresses entered for this promotional draws were randomly selected from an internet resource database of of registered software and domain users.

Reference Number: NLS 11 EU 2009
e-ticket number: 765-45556453 098
Category: A
Amount: $2,500,000.00 (Two Million, Five Hundred Thousand Dollars)

You may wish to establish contact with your claims agent via e-mail with the particulars presented below:

Name: Martins Ward
Tel::+31 619 551 210

In line with the governing rules of claim, you are requested to furnish your claims agent With the following information:

1. Full names
2. Address
3. Occupation
4. Tel/Fax
5. Nationality
6. Winning Reference Number

Yours faithfully,
John Lubke
Promotions Co-ordinator

Anti-fraud resources: