Nigerian Bank Scheme!

This is an international scam that has recently whittled more than $100 million in documented losses from Americans. The scam from the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC), seeks access to people’s bank accounts in return for a commission. The con artists mail letters to victims and ask them to fax their bank account number and […]

This is an international scam that has recently whittled more than $100 million in documented losses from Americans. The scam from the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC), seeks access to people’s bank accounts in return for a commission. The con artists mail letters to victims and ask them to fax their bank account number and the telephone and fax numbers of their bank.

The letters have a variety of themes, but generally state that you or your company were chosen because of a “reliable recommendation” to assist them in a business transaction that involves $35 million that was supposedly left from over-invoicing. By assisting them in this transaction, the scam continues, NNPC will grant a 20- to 30-percent share of the total dollar amount that is to be transferred. The victims never see a dime of the money. Some victims have even been coerced into flying to Nigeria to receive their payment, where more money is extorted from them to let them go free.

This scam started more than a decade ago. Although it is reported that fewer than 1 percent of recipients fall for the scam, the numbers could possibly be higher because some people may be too embarrassed to report the crime.

Con artists are, by nature, very persuasive people.

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