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Saturday, May 23, 2009

How Does Money Mule Scam Affect Us?

money mule, money mule scam, money mule scammer, tournaments pro scam, internet scam, money scam, online scam, online money scamI have been writing here about money mule scam, especially regarding a personally experienced money mule scammer, Tournaments Pro. However, I have not cleared yet how do money mule scammers really affect us. Would it affect us? Why should we bother about money mule scams and money mule scammers? Why should we be careful and be aware of a potential money mule scammer ? What can it do to us? What is a money mule scam in the place, anyway?According to Wikipedia, a money mule is a person who transfers money and reships high value goods that have been fraudulently obtained in one country, usually via the internet, to another country, usually where the perpetrator of the fraud lives. The term money mule is formed by analogy with drug mules. Moreover, the need for money mules arises because while a criminal in a developing country/ base country can obtain the credit card numbers, bank account numbers, passwords and other financial details of a victim living in the first world/victim’s country via the internet through techniques such as malware and phishing, turning those details into money usable in the criminal's own country can be difficult. Many businesses will refuse to transfer money or ship goods to certain countries where there is a high likelihood that the transaction is fraudulent. The criminal therefore recruits a money mule in the victim's country who will receive money transfers and merchandise and resend them to the criminal in return for a commission.

This happens to millions of us every day. Sometimes spam mails are not filtered and some of us jump to conclusion believing that such offers are true. The case that I personally experienced was an international company offering a dream job, say that’s TournamentsPro. The offer is to be their agent or coordinator or anything that can connect you/me/us to that fake company. We/You/I would then become a financial intermediary, not really an agent, receiving payments for them and distributing such money or transferring such received amount of money to them, and, naturally, keeping a commission on each transaction or for the percentage of the amount transferred.

Sometimes, these scams can offer really a “too good to be true” kind of contract. Only credentials (they may even use these credentials later on for another scam) such as passport, signature, bank details, etcetera are required from the victim: no investment, plain and simple.
But what’s the problem with this? How can we be victims? We are only distributing assets, right? We don’t invest and no money wasted from our side so what’s the big deal?
At first, it really looks good and promising but it really is not good and promising and can compromise our dignity and damage our good name. The victim is the money mule now, a person that is involve in a fraudulent, or a lot of fraudulent activities.

In my
previous posts about this scam, we take this case as an example:
the Tournaments Pro, Limited Company. It’s a legitimate looking website, or a company’s website (pretending to be) and so they can fool people easily. The scammers behind tournaments pro has other websites claiming to be legitimate business: real estate, auto rental and sales, etc.

What the scammers do is try to sell their “non-existent” services with the payment sent to or deposited in the account of the victim: the money mule and there you are: the victim is involved! It is the victim who has the name, where the dirty money came in and where the authorities has tracks because of the payments and the names given to the other scammed individual: the buyer.

Usually, the scammer sells inexistent auto, or rent an inexistent apartment for a very low price and ask for a down payment. This very little down payment is the amount that goes to the money mule person (the victim) but this little amount can accumulate to big amounts and when the victim buyer finds out, it’s the money mule who’s having a big trouble: and that’s where the big trouble comes in if one gets into the hands and claw of the money mule scammer. Be careful then. Do not trust offers online.

10 comments:

  1. I have an online friend that I believe has or is going to fall for this fraudulent scheme. I tried to warn this person but as you said, it just looks and sound too good to turn down. I hope my friend rethinks what they are about to do and will throw the offer as far away as possible. Thanks for the post & informing me of such illegal actions.

    Friends 4 Life!

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  2. I think anyone who has been using email for a while would understand that these quick profit schemes are a fake. But yes sadly some people are gullible and suffer as a result.

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  3. You might like to know where the Consumer Federation of America had a press conference scheduled for today to discuss fake-cheque scams--a close cousin of the "money mule" such, IIBC.

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  4. I'm glad to see this here, as recently my friend was asked work in "Accounts Payable" for a company, http://www.misyst.com/. Everythign seemed fine, until it came time to pay her, the sent funds to her so she could conduct business, and after the funds arrived they asked her to send so much of it to Nigeria via Western Union. Her boss stated, "If anyone asks, just tell them they (the recipient) are a friend of yours." That pretty much sealed it up for us, definitely a money mule scam.

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  5. thanks for the info and educating us:)...its always good to learn stg new, expecially about Internet as there are plenty of hidden dangers!

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  6. You are so right sis, people should be very careful in dealing offers online..

    Kumusta ka na dyan?

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  7. even i got such a mail, and i was unaware of such fraudulent case. i have given my account number, passport zerox and telephone number, but fortunately money is not transfered to my account and bank traced out that there some illegal transaction is going on to my account and they blocked my acount. Now the thing are settled. but my question is in future is it possible i came in trouble as i have sent my passport zerox to the mailed person?

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  8. nice info.. hm .. its realy long article but its great.. thanks for this info :)
    wait you on mine..:)

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  9. This was a very good article warning about the dangers of money mules. I have always been cautious of them, especially bank and lottery scams from people in another country. good information though is provided about these types of scammers. You do not want to be fooled by one of them. Really good article on the dangers of money mules.

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  10. In response to Sandpeep. I'd be concerned that the photocpy of your passport might be used fraudelently, though there are "some" companies that need it, legitimately (though rare) to verify your citizen-ship. Whenever someone asks for information like that, I just figure the offer is no longer worth it.

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