Public Service Announcement

Prepared by the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3)

March 7, 2006
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Nigerian 419 Scam — New Sophisticated Technique

The FBI has become aware of a new sophisticated technique used to obtain funds through the 419 scam. The scam contains the usual e-mail requesting assistance in transferring millions of dollars out of Nigeria. The sophistication begins when the recipient is directed to open a bank account at a Suffolk England Bank and is provided a link to the bank's Web site. After clicking the link, the victim is directed to a professional-looking bank Web site which appears to be that of Suffolk England Bank; however, it is actually a replica of the true bank site. Within hours after opening the account, a balance of millions of dollars appears to have been deposited in the victim's account. When attempting to transfer or withdraw funds from the account, the victim receives a notice requiring certain "fees" to be paid. The victim is then instructed to wire transfer the fees to Africa. If the victim makes an inquiry concerning the wire transfer, they are given instructions for a Bank of China branch in London and provided some reason justifying why the Suffolk England Bank cannot handle the transfer.

Review of the wiring instructions indicated the funds are actually being transferred to the Bank of China in Beijing.

Always be cautious of e-mail inviting you to provide your personal and/or financial information.

If you have received this e-mail, or one similar, please file a complaint at www.IC3.gov.