The United States Department of State (Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affair) has issued a very useful, informative and, more importantly, READABLE document online about the most common type of international fraud
Here’s an excerpt:
… AFF criminals include university-educated professionals who are the best in the world for nonviolent spectacular crimes. AFF letters first surfaced in the mid-1980s around the time of the collapse of world oil prices, which is Nigeriaâ€™s main foreign exchange earner. Some Nigerians turned to crime in order to survive. Fraudulent schemes such as AFF succeeded in Nigeria, because Nigerian criminals took advantage of the fact that Nigerians speak English, the international language of business, and the countryâ€™s vast oil wealth and natural gas reservesâ€”ranked 13th in the worldâ€”offer lucrative business opportunities that attract many foreign companies and individuals.
AFF confidence schemes are limited only by imagination, however, they usually fall into the following categories:
â€¢ Transfer of Funds From Over-Invoiced Contracts
â€¢ Contract Fraud (C.O.D. of Goods and Services)
â€¢ Conversion of Hard Currency (Black-Money)
â€¢ Sale of Crude Oil at Below Market Prices
â€¢ Purchase of Real Estate
â€¢ Disbursement of Money from Wills (Benefactor of a Will)
â€¢ Threat Scams or Extortion
Each of these business schemes will be discussed in detail in the section entitled AFF Schemes: Themes and Variations.
According to the Metropolitan Police Company Fraud Department in London, some 3,000 AFF letters a week are mailed or faxed worldwide; primarily from Nigeria.
The United States and Great Britain are the recipients of over 50 percent of this material.
Get the document in PDF format from : http://www.state.gov/www/regions/africa/naffpub.pdf
As I said, worth reading. Send a copy to all your relatives today – especially those ‘silver surfer’ types – they are the prime target of many of these scams.