21 Sep 2004 amck   » (Journeyer)

Warning: New fraud in progress

A new fraud from our Nigerian "friends" is happening in Ireland at the moment. In the case I know of, it was to an Indian student.

The student was selling an item on a small ebay-type site in college, worth around 100 Euro. The fraudster pretended to be a purchaser in Holland, 'Currenly at a conference in Thailand', so a 'friend in Ireland who owed her some money' would send on a cheque.

The cheque was for 2000 Euro; it was sent via Fedex from an Irish address. The dupe was to send on the balance to Nigeria.

So the victim, being suspicious, waited for the cheque to clear before sending on the money and item. Once the money appeared in her account (on her ATM statements), she completes the transaction.

Then the cheque bounces. The cheque, having physically looked valid, was "lodged" by the bank "in good faith", until the money is transferred from the (overseas?) bank. Hence it only looked like the cheque had cleared. It hasn't; she is now out 1900 Euro.

This happened yesterday, I believe (September 20); so this is a current technique. Most people are not aware of this subtety of cheques; the only party the victim trusted was the bank, who is now demanding she honour the 1900 Euro overdraft ...

Beware, and warn friends.

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