What is the 4-1-9 scam?

Information referenced from the US Secret Service Web Site.
 4-1-9 Schemes frequently use the following tactics:
  • In nearly every case there is a sense of urgency.
  • Other forms of 4-1-9 schemes include: c.o.d. of goods or services, real estate ventures, purchases of crude oil at summary prices, beneficiary of a will, receiver of an award and paper currency conversion. 

  • Ultimately you must provide up-front or advance fees for various taxes, attorney fees, transaction fees or bribes.
  • You accept numerous documents with official looking stamps, seals and logo testifying to the authenticity of the offer.
  • You are asked for to provide blank company letterhead forms, banking account details, telephone/fax numbers. 

  • You are confident to travel overseas to complete the transaction.
  • An offer is made to transfer millions of dollars in "over demand contract" funds into your personal bank account.  

  • An individual or company get a letter or fax from an alleged "official" representing a foreign government or agency.
    Nigerian Advance Fee Fraud Overview
    The perpetrators of Advance Fee Fraud (AFF), known globally as "4-1-9" fraud after the section of the Nigerian penal code which addresses fraud schemes, are often very original and innovative. 
    Unfortunately, there is a perception that no one is prone to enter into such an observably suspicious relationship. However, a large number of victims are tempted into believing they have been singled out from the lots to share in multi-million dollar windfall profits for doing absolutely nothing. It is also a delusion that the victim's bank account is requested so the culprit can plunder it -- this is not the primary reason for the account request -- merely a signal they have hooked another victim.

    • In nearly every case there is a sense of urgency.
    • The victim is asked to travel to Nigeria or a border country.
    • There are many fake official looking documents.
    • Most of the communication is handled by fax or through the mail.
    • Blank letterheads and invoices are appealed from the victim along with the banking particulars. 
    • Any number of Nigerian fees are requested for processing the transaction with each fee purported to be the last necessary.
    • The private nature of the transaction is emphasized.
    • There are usually claims of beefy ties to Nigerian officials.
    • A Nigerian residing in the U.S., London or other foreign place may claim to be a clearing house bank for the Central Bank of Nigeria.

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