Advance fee fraud

Advance fee fraud involves a payment in advance for a promise of wealth (419 Fraud) wills, gifts, prizes or employment.

They contact their targets by mail, phone, fax, or email.

  • This type of scam, originally known as the "Spanish Prisoner Letter", has been carried out since at least the sixteenth century via ordinary postal mail.
  • Section 419 of the Nigerian Penal Code prohibits this activity, hence they are know as '419' Frauds.

For example:

  • You’ve won £30,000 cash prize or a lottery jackpot and in order to claim it, send a payment for £10 as a release fee in order for you to receive your prize.
  • An implausible series of events has occurred and your help is required in getting money out of their country, which will normally involve making a series of payments.
  • A clairvoyant, for a small fee, will increase your wealth, happiness, love life, professional or personal success.
  • You’ve got your dream job, and have to make payments for taxes, visas, "anti terrorism certificates" or any reason.

Do not respond to this type of approach - you will be targeted as part of a ‘suckers’ list.

  • Fraudsters will share or sell on your details to other fraudsters.

Never send money via money transfer to someone that you have never met.

Money transfer is a favoured method of payment for advance fee.

If the promise seems too good to be true, it probably is.

(Source:Met Police)

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