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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: "John Polis" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sun, 1 May 2016 09:18:53 -0700
Subject: Contratulation !!!

Dear Subscriber,
Skype Online Lotto wishes to congratulate you for being one of our 2016 summer lucky winners of the year. You have won $1,500,000.00 (One Million Five Hundred Thousand United States Dollars) only
After the automated computerized balloting, you emerged as one of the lucky winners. Important note, draws Were Conducted from a list of over 125M email addresses and no lottery ticket was sold In this lottery, but data were collected from all Skype subscribers, as well as assistance from Microsoft, Google and Yahoo, as well as nominees from Chambers of commerce and industry.
Contact Mr. Douglas through the details below.
Rev. Mark Collins
Manager, Foreign Operations
Group,144 Global Avenue Victoria Island
Lagos Nigeria.
So contact the office and Keep this office informed when you have received your prize money.
Mr. John Polis

Anti-fraud resources: