West African/Nigerian Letters

Nigerian Letters, also known as the 419 scam or West Africa/ Nigeria Business Letters, are another variation of this type of scam. In these cases you are advised that a large sum of money will be transferred to your account upon receipt of an advance fee paid by the consumer. This offer can be received by mail,fax or e-mail.

According to the RCMP Website these letters are generally variations of the following:

  • You receive an “urgent” business proposal “in strictest confidence” from a Nigerian/West-African civil servant /businessman.
  • The sender, often a member of the “contract review panel”, obtained your name and profile through the Chamber of Commerce or the International Trade Commission.
  • The sender recently intercepted or has been named beneficiary of the proceeds from real estate, oil products, over-invoiced contracts, cargo shipments, or other commodities, and needs a foreign partner to assist with laundering the money.
  • Since their government/business position prohibits them from opening foreign bank accounts, senders ask you to deposit the sum, usually somewhere between $25-50 million, into your personal account.
  • For your assistance, you will receive between 15-30% of the total, which sits in the Central Bank of Nigeria awaiting transfer.
  • To complete the transaction, they ask you to provide your bank name and address, your telephone and fax numbers, the name of your beneficiary, and, of course, your bank account numbers.
  • The sender promises to forward your share within 10-14 working days!

(reproduced from: http://www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/scams/west_african_e.htm )

Anyone who thinks they might have fallen victim to this or any other type of scam should notify their local police department and their bank.

More information can be obtained from the RCMP Website

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