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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: Mrs.Stella Botha <>
Date: 17 Feb 2012 04:53:54 +0000
Subject: Re: Congratulations, Your Email ID has won,

The London 2012 Olympic committees in conjunction with the 26 official Sponsors hereby announce the result of the 2012 last quarter Grant Award lucky bonanza draws held in London; your e-mail address succeed USD50.000.00. To claim your prize, contact the assigned Claims Manager via email or Tel: your prize winning number is (IOC/201177Q9124). Mr. Pierre Françelephone: +2779 537 6534 fax: +27862246829. Website ( Your names, address, Telephone /Fax numbers, age, and occupation. Email:

Anti-fraud resources: