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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: "Elizabeth Lyons" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Fri, 3 Mar 2023 23:37:13 -0800

We noticed that some prize remain unclaimed and your email ID appeared to be among the lucky winners who have not filed for the claim of their award prize.

Your email ID won during the Mega Millions International Lottery, Megamillions, Monthly Play, Thunder ball, Hot picks which is an internet giveaway program whereby email addresses extracted from the internet, and the winners selected from a ballot draw.

Note, that tickets are not sold anywhere for this program; hence, your e-mail address subsequently won you in the 3rd category, i.e. match five plus bonus.

You have been approved for over two months to claim a total sum of One Million United States Dollars, credited to file GOLDEN/9GM/327752.

Sincerely yours,
Elizabeth Lyons
Mega Millions International Lottery
International claims agent.

Anti-fraud resources: