Business Scams: ATM Card Money Transfer Scams
In a new variation of an old scam, the potential victim receives an email saying that they are owed money from a "inheritance / contract" (with no explanation of what that is or how you would be connected to it) and that the president of Nigeria, or president of the Senate, or some other nonsense, has acted on your behalf to send you an ATM card with the money, if only you will quickly send them some information.
Apparently Nigeria and other areas of the third World are so swimming in wealth that they are randomly giving it away. And to think we've been sending them food and financial aid - what a waste!
Of course, this is a scam, and the money doesn't exist.
For your education and entertainment, below are links to sample actual emails of this type of scam, along with how to recognize the scam and report them. These are of a type called "The Advance Fee Fraud (AFF)" email is also known as "419" after the section of the Nigerian penal law that deals with this type of fraud. It takes many forms, we have categorized the scams below as "Orphans and Widows of wealthy diplomats, generals, presidents, etc."
How to Recognize an ATM Card Scam
Let's look at some actual emails people received and see how we can spot that they are scams. In general, notice the awesome amount of misspellings, poor grammar and run-on sentences. Even if they weren't scams, would you go into business with someone who writes like that?
- Rev. James Wade, United Bank for Africa (UBA), "we wish to inform you that we have already prepared the ATM CARD on your favor and it's now activated and ready for use which you will use to be making ".
- DR RICHARD CHIMA, CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA, "Account normalization of your banking details has been delayed by International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Financial Services Authority (UK)." email@example.com
- Dr. Eze Ayogu, Nigeria National Assembly Complex, "This is to acknowledge the receipt of the order from the senate house, in respect with the provision act of decree 114 of the 1999 constitution; I am directed to inform you that your payment verification and confirmations is correct. Therefore, we are happy to inform you that arrangements have been concluded to effect your payment as soon as possible ", GLOBAL SPEED COURIER SERVICES LIMITED NIGERIA
- President Alhaji Umaru Yar'Adua, Afirbank Plaza, Federal Republic of Nigeria
I found out that you have not received your payment due to your lack of co-operation and not fulfilling the obligations giving to you in respect to your Winning Prize/inheritance payment.Secondly, you are hereby adviced to stop dealing with some non-officials in the bank as this is an illegal act and will have to stop if you so wish to receive your payment immediately. You will receive an ATM Card from the Swift Card Payment Centre, Dr.James Ofor
- Mr Paul Clifford , Zenith Bank ATM, "This is to officially inform you that we have verified your contract file presently on my desk, and I found out that you have not received your payment due to your lack of co-operation and not..."
- David Mark, Swift Card, We have received the express mandate and instructions of the President,Federal Republic of Nigeria: ALHAJI UMARU YAR ADUA GCFR together with the EFCC Nigeria, the Interpol and the FBI to commence the immediate release of your funds through our swift card payment center. Contact GOVERNOR CHARLES SOLUDO
- John Walter, CENTRAL BANK OF AFRICA (BOA), FEDEX DELIVERY SERVICES, I have deposited your ATM MASTER CARD of USD $800,000,00 United state dollars to the FedEx Delivery services here in West Africa, due to I have waited enough to hear from you so that your funds will be transferred through CENTRAL BANK OF AFRICA (BOA) here
- Federal Express (FEDEX) - Ms. Vera Bells, "in respect of your ATM INTERSWITCH CARD that Mrs. Nona Ugboma brought to this company to be delivered to you ..." - PHILIP EKPO
- Mr. MIKE ANTHON at BRITISH HIGH COMMISSION - ...received a report of scam against you and other British/US citizens and Malaysia, Etc. whom the country of Nigeria/Benin,Bokinafaso And Ghana have recompensed you due... 229-9793 2215
- Walter in Customer Care, After a meeting at our headquarters, we got a solution to your problem and as you may know, we have arranged your payment through our SWIFT CARD PAYMENT CENTER in Europe, America,Africa and Asia Pacific. firstname.lastname@example.org
- Major. Gene A.A. Adele - This is to officially inform you that we have verified your contract/inheritance file and found out that why you have not received your payment is because you have not fulfilled the obligations given to you in respect of your contract/inheritance payment, email@example.com
- Tony Raymond - THIS IS TO OFFICIALLY INFORM YOU THAT WE HAVE VERIFIED YOUR INHERITANCE FILE AND FOUND OUT THAT WHY YOU HAVE NOT RECEIVED YOUR PAYMENT IS BECAUSE YOU HAVE NOT FULFILLED THE OBLIGATIONS GIVEN TO YOU
- Barrister Usman Bello - An attorney to the President of Nigeria who wants to send you an ATM card - just contact "Dr. Daniel Smith"
- Roger Bernaldez - "WE HAVE VERIFIED YOUR INHERITANCE FILE AND FOUND OUT THAT WHY YOU HAVE NOT RECEIVED YOUR PAYMENT IS BECAUSE YOU HAVE NOT FULFILLED THE OBLIGATIONS GIVEN TO YOU IN RESPECT OF YOUR CONTRACT/ INHERITANCE PAYMENT. " MRS. LINDA HILL
- DR WILLIAM IBRU - We hereby officially notifying you about the present arrangement to pay you,your over due contract/inheritance fund, MR ADAM BENSON
- ALHAJI MUSA BELLO - "WE HAVE VERIFIED YOUR CONTRACT/ INHERITANCE FILE AND FOUND OUT THAT WHY YOU HAVE NOT RECEIVED YOUR PAYMENT IS BECAUSE YOU HAVE NOT FULFILLED THE OBLIGATIONS GIVEN TO YOU IN RESPECT OF YOUR CONTRACT/INHERITANCE PAYMENT. " DR. AKINSOLA AKINFEMIWA
- James Odili - "I have been waiting for you since to come down here and pick your Bank Draft but did not heard from you since that time then I went and deposited the Draft with Apex Bank Plc here in Benin Republic, because I travelled to Japan to see my boss and will not come back till next month end. I have arranged with them to make your payment to you with their new ATM MASTER CARD" - REV DR.MATHEW OKOH
And please let us know about any suspicious calls or emails you receive. We look for patterns so that we can alert the authorities and victims to new scams, before it is too late!