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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: "David J," (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Wed, 12 Sep 2012 17:18:12 +0100
Subject: Our Ref: RTB /SNT/STB ... URGENT


Dear. Beneficiary.


I am Special Agent David Jackson, am an FBI delegate that has been
delegated to investigate this fraudsters who are in the business of
swindling Foreigners.Please be informed that during our investigation we
got to find out that there is a huge sum of $10.5million that has been
assigned in your name and this fraudsters are busy swindling you without
any hope of receiving your fund.

NOTE: You are not supposed to pay that huge amount from the beginning
before the release of your fund can commence depending on how you want the
transfer made to you.

We have to inform you that we have made some arrests in respect of this
delayed over due fund. I have a very limited time, so I advise you
urgently respond to this message .

I shall expect your response as soon as you receive this email. Please
Note that I have attached my Identification to this email,do not inform
any of the people that collected money from you before now about this new
development, to avoid jeopardizing our investigation.

Best Regard,

Confidentiality Notice: The information in this e-mail and any attachments
thereto is intended for the recipient(s)only. This e-mail, including any
attachments, may contain information that is privileged and confidential
and subject to legal restrictions and penalties regarding its unauthorized
disclosure or other use. If you are not the intended recipient, you are
hereby notified that any disclosure, copying, distribution, or the taking
of any action or inaction in reliance on the contents of this e-mail and
any of its attachments is STRICTLY PROHIBITED. If you have received this
e-mail in error, please immediately notify the sender via return e-mail;
delete this e-mail and all attachments from your e-mail system and your
computer system and network; and destroy any paper copies you may have in
your possession. Thank you for your cooperation.

Anti-fraud resources: