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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: "LOTTO NL" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Fri, 15 Jan 2010 07:27:55 +0100
Subject: Dear Internet User,

Dear Internet User,

This Email is to inform you that you emerged a winner of the sum of $2,500,000.00USD with the following numbers attached Ref Number: PW 9590 ES 9414,Batch Number: 573881545-NL/2009 and Ticket Number: PP3502/ 8707-01 on our online draws which was played on the year 2010.

For further Information about your Winnings,contact your Lottery Claims Officer with the following contact Address Below.
Name: Mr.Paul Edward
Phone: 0031 61 7705 833
Fax: 0031 84 733 8594
Amsterdam. The Netherlands

You will provide him with the following information:

You are advised to call the Claims agent for confirmation or provide the following information for processing the payment of your cash award.

Telephone/Fax number:
Winning Reference Number:
Identification I D:

Congratulations! Thank you for being a user of the World Wide Web.

Yours Faithfully,
Lottery Coordinator.

Copyright © 2010 The Netherlands National Lottery Inc.

Anti-fraud resources: