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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: "Powerball Promos" <>
Reply-To: hussianyarima@YAHOO.COM
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 2010 14:02:42 +0300 (EEST)
Subject: Attn: Prize Winner

Attn: Prize Winner,

We wish to notify you that you were listed as a beneficiary in the
Powerball EMAIL DRAW held on 13th of April 2010.To claim your
prize(£520,000.00), you must first contact the claims department by email
or phone for processing and remittance of your prize to you. Find below
the claims officer contact details:

Processing Officer
Mr. Richard Ken

NOTE: In your acceptance of this award, we request that you kindly forward
your letter of acceptance; your current telephone and fax numbers, Full
Names and a forwarding address to enable us file necessary documents with
the gaming board for the release of this sum of money.
Also you are to indicate "X" for the option you want your prize remitted
to you.
(1) By Courier Delivery Of Your Prize: ... [.....]
(2) Bank Payment Transfer|Online Account Transfer........ [.....]

Kate Henshaw (Mrs.)

Anti-fraud resources: