Washington DC


  Scam | Inheritance Scheme


A very wealthy stranger has died and you are asked to assist with banking and to share the wealth.

The Pitch:

You receive a wordy letter, or email message, from a stranger, seeking your assistance in moving large amounts of money, often millions of dollars, to your bank account. You are promised a very significant percentage for little or no effort on your part, perhaps as high as 20%, for simply providing your bank account details. You may be asked to be a trustee or to stand in as a long lost heir of a deceased's fortune.

A web site may even be provided so you can confirm the tragic death of some wealthy individual. The fortune may be said to be in cash in a safety deposit box, evidenced by a Certificate of Deposit. The message may have political overtones or refer to a Diplomat in another country who will broker the transfer of the money, often through some 'back door' arrangement. You may be provided an overseas phone number and asked to indicate whether or not you are interested so that alternative plans can be made should you decide not to participate.

The Facts:

Beware of tragic deaths and persons looking for your assistance in moving large amounts of money and to fulfill the role of trustee or heir. Legitimate estates do not solicit trustees or heirs in this manner and do not promise to carry out the exercise 'through the back door'. If someone promises you 20% of a fortune for doing little else than provide banking details, it is too good to be true, and if it is too good to be true, it probably is not true.

This inheritance scheme could end here with the takeover of your bank account and depletion of your funds by a number of fraudulent means. A second phase of the scheme could be invoked, in which you are asked to pay an up front fee in order to collect your so-called inheritance. You do not normally pay money to collect money. this is also known as an advance fee scam.