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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: (sent from abused email account)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Tue, 10 Sep 2013 23:55:18 +0100
Subject: Read and Reply Asap!!!

Dear Deborah Parker,

I do not know if you are still on this email address, But I pray it gets delivered to you. I have been trying to reach you for the past six month and every effort of mine has proved abortive.

I am writing to you in regards to the ultimatum that I received from the TSB Lloyd bank United Kingdom concerning your overdue fund in their custody. The Federal Government of Nigeria has made your payment now payable to you via the TSB Lloyd bank offshore branch in London without any upfront payment.

Please reconfirm back to me that you have received this circular by sending me the details bellow, so as to enable me forward them to the paying bank for further release of funds to you.

Your name in full
Contact address
Home telephone
Cell Telephone
Scanned copy of any form of identification

Once these information is received by the bank, The bank will open an account in your name with them and have a VISA card issued on the account, Once the VISA card is processed, The bank will dispatch the card to your contact address without any shipping fee required from you.

Please be sure that the information that you are sending are accurate as it is with these information that your Visa Card will be processed and delivered to you with the card pin free of charge.

Anticipating your swift response,
Best regards,

Wolfgang Berndt

Anti-fraud resources: