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International Scams & Internet Fraud

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INTERNATIONAL FRAUD SCHEMES AND INTERNET SCAMS


The Consular Affairs Bureau receives daily calls about international scams involving Internet dating, inheritance, work permits, overpayment, and money-laundering. Many scams are initiated through the Internet; victims range in age from 18 to 81 and come from all socio-economic backgrounds.

While such confidence schemes have long existed, the advent of the Internet has greatly increased their prevalence.  Individual Americans have lost considerable money on these scams, ranging from a few hundred dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars.

All types of advance-fee scams have one point in common – the targeted person is led to believe that he or she has a chance to attain something of very great personal value (financial reward, a romantic relationship, etc) in return for a small up-front monetary outlay.  As a general rule, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

If you feel you have been a victim of an Internet scam, please consult the publications below for help and send all reports of Internet fraud directly to the Internet Crime Complaint Center. If the scam originated through a particular website, notify also the administrators of that website.  When it becomes apparent you are the victim of a scam, it is best to end all communications with the scam artist, rather than attempt resolution.  It is extremely rare for victims to recover lost money.  If you feel threatened in any way, you should report your situation to the local police. 

If you are concerned about an American in distress overseas, but you are not sure if it is a legitimate case, call our office of Overseas Citizens Services at 888-407-4747 (from overseas: 202-501-4444).  Review our information on
Emergency Assistance to Americans Abroad.

Scams evolve constantly, and we cannot include all scam variations here.  We do hope, however, that these brochures will help alert you to the indicators of some common scams and actions you should take, Just click on the title below the picture for the relevant information.

 

TYPES OF SCAMS


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ADVICE FROM THE UK POLICE AGENCIES ON INTERNET FRAUD

These pages have been set up by the Sterling Prevention Team UK as a resource to assist you or your company in combating specific types of fraud and other economic crime, and to prevent you becoming a victim of crime.

 

Personal Fraud Prevention Advice Document - [ Adobe PDF - 151KB]

 

Sterling has established a number of fraud prevention forums in different business sectors. These provide advice to individuals and share good practice to reduce fraud and other economic crime.

 

Economic Crime Prevention Advice


 Advance Fees Fraud – Paying money for a promise of wealth (419 Fraud)

Cash Machines - ATM (Automated Teller Machine) Card Fraud

Criminal Cash-Back, Cheque/Draft Overpayments, Shipping and ESCROW frauds

Company Fraud and Company Identity/Impersonation Fraud

Employee and Internal Staff Fraud

House and Property purchase and take-over fraud

High Yield Investments, Share and other Investment Frauds

Internet, Advertising, Auction and On Line Fraud

Lotteries - prizes winners and unsolicited awards

Money laundering and asset seizure

Money Transfer – Advice when sending money to somebody you don’t know

Personal Fraud Prevention Advice.

Unwanted and Unsolicited Mail, Marketing and Telephone Calls.

Vehicle buying and selling advice

Vulnerable people, the elderly, infirm and the Mental Capacity Act.

Working from home scams/financial intermediaries – Money Mules

 

Reporting Fraud, Bank & Card Fraud, Scams, eMails and Web Sites.

In an emergency you should phone 999.

You should use this service to contact police in situations when you need an immediate response - if a crime is happening now or if anyone is in immediate danger.

If as a result of one of these frauds or any other type of fraud, you have become a victim of crime, you will need to contact your local police to report the allegation.

If you are resident outside the London area the following link will provide you with details of your local force website from which you can obtain contact details of your local police.

If you are an investigator and think that we may be able to help you, please contact the SCD6 Economic and Specialist Crime OCU via normal police channels.

Please send all banking related phishing emails to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Queries related to Paypal or Ebay should be sent to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it and This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it respectively.



If you would like to see anything of interest, or to advertise on this section, please contact one of our expert team HERE.........

Regards

The SW Team..........