A reader: I just received an email from The Desk of Lt. Gen. Mohammed Jubril, Commander of the 13th Brigade Division, Lagos Wing of Nigerian Army. First, he does not want you to respond to the email unless you are over 70 years old. He has some unclaimed funds from an old contract. It’s over $15 million. I would get 40% and he would take 60%. Is this for real?
Action Line: Over the last couple of decades we have been warning consumers and businesses about scams that originate in Nigeria. These have been generally letters, faxes and emails targeted at businesses. The communications normally tell the company that they are with one of the Nigerian governmental ministries and are in need of a bank account in America to temporarily place millions or even hundreds of millions of dollars. For the use of the bank account, the business or the consumer will get a portion of the money.
What potential victims receive are normally poorly written. Businesses and consumers have been asking us: “Why do you keep warning me about this scam, nobody would believe this stuff anyway?” Because people are still responding to them, becoming the next victim.
They are labeled by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) as impostor scams. The crimes they commit include conspiracy to commit fraud, wire fraud, bank fraud, identity theft, money laundering, etc.
What the scammers are asking for is your account information. They do not ask you for that at first. They might ask for your name and address first. Then they will continue until you stop communicating with them or they have all your info. If you give them your account information, they will clean it out.
Action Line is written by Blair Looney, president and CEO for the Better Business Bureau serving Central California. Send your consumer concerns, questions and problems to Action Line at the Better Business Bureau, 2600 W. Shaw Lane, Fresno, CA 93711 or firstname.lastname@example.org.