Beware These Fake Feds
Thursday, July 14, 2011
Scammers will do anything to get your money, including pretending to be the Federal Bureau of Investigation. A North Carolina woman has received a letter, purportedly sent by FBI Director Robert Mueller, threatening arrest if she doesn’t pay $350 to the US Department of Homeland Security to obtain a Clearance Certificate.
The fraudulent letter, sent via email and sporting an official-looking FBI logo, contains numerous typos and two other hints that it is illegitimate: an FBI agent with an AOL email address (rather than a .gov address), and a reference to a commission in Nigeria. Nigeria has long been a hotbed of scams. These scammers are using the authority of the FBI to try to appear legitimate and to scare recipients into paying them money. The real FBI never sends out emails soliciting money or personal information from citizens, and there is no such thing as a Clearance Certificate.