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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: "NationWide Loan" <>
Date: Tue, 23 Mar 2010 11:10:13 +0800
Subject: Loan Offer At 2% Apply Now

Dear Customer,

NationWide Loans to help you change the way you live. Arranging a loan with
us is simple and straightforward,loans from £10,000 to £5,000,000 over 5
to 35 years we make the process convenient and fast. Please if interested in
getting a loan from our bank do get back to us as soon as possible for more

Kind Regards,

Mr James Whitehead
Manager Nationwide
Loan Company UK.

Anti-fraud resources: