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80 Indicted In ‘Sophisticated’ Nigerian Online Fraud, Money Laundering Scheme

Fraud

A wide-ranging fraud and money laundering scheme borne out of the well-known Nigerian prince email scams has taken a big hit after a nearly 3-year FBI investigation.

A 252-count federal grand jury indictment unsealed Thursday charged 80 people from around the world, including 11 arrested in Southern California, with participating in a massive conspiracy to steal millions through fraud schemes and launder the money through a Los Angeles-based network. The FBI called it one of the largest internet fraud schemes the agency has ever seen.

The conspiracy involved mostly Nigerian nationals. Two of the defendants named in the indictment were already in federal custody on other charges, six are fugitives believed to be in the United States and the rest are believed to be abroad, with most of them in Nigeria.

According to the criminal complaint, the defendants targeted victims in the U.S. and across the globe in romance scams and with fake emails from known businesses, all in an effort to get money sent under false pretenses. The FBI says the schemes resulted in the fraudulent transfer of at least $6 million.

“The romance scams prey on vulnerable populations, but the BEC victims are often reputable companies and conscientious employees who have been fooled by sophisticated cyber frauds into transferring money,” said Paul Delacourt, the FBI Assistant Director in Charge.

BEC refers to Business Email Compromised fraud and involves the criminals finding out which employee within a business handles money and wire transfers and sending them emails that look like they were sent from vendors they usually do business with to request money.

Help your employees avoid falling foul of BEC by running them through Cyber Security Awareness Training.

With thanks to the Cyber Defence Alliance and CBS Local. The full story is here: https://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2019/08/22/nigerian-online-fraud-money-laundering-fbi-investigation/

Find out how easy it is to roll out cyber security awareness training for your organisation. Ask for a demo now.

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