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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: Mark Riddly <>
Date: Thu, 6 Oct 2011 13:53:21 +0700
Subject: Winner

One Churchill Place, Canary Wharf
London E14 5LN
United Kingdom

Congratulations :

We happily announce to you the draw of the LONDON 2012 OLYMPICS promotional Lottery program held on the 30th September 2011 in United Kingdom.
Your e-mail address attached to ticket number: B9564 75604545 188 with! Serial number 97560 drew the winning:
which subsequently won you the lottery in the 2nd category.

You have therefore been approved to claim a total sum of 1,000,000.00 (One Million British Pounds Sterling) in cash credited to file PC/9080118308/02.This is from a total cash prize of 110,000,000.00 Million, shared amongst the first One Hundred and Ten (110) lucky winners in this category world-wide.

This is to enhance the publicity of the games come 2012. For security reasons, you are advised to keep your winning information confidential till your claims is processed and your money remitted to you in whatever manner you deem fit to claim your prize.

This is part of our precautionary measure to avoid double claiming and unwarranted abuse of this program by some unscrupulous elements. Please be warned. Please send the following requirements for us to start processing your prize.

1. Name:
2. Address:
3. Age:
4. Sex:
5. Occupation:
6. Telephone Number:
7. Fax Number:
8. Mobile Number:
9. Country of Residence:

please quote your reference/batch numbers while responding to this message.

Thank you for being part of our promotional lottery program.
Mark Riddly
Claims Agent

Anti-fraud resources: