Notarial Services Scams Please note: The Department of State assumes no responsibility or liability for the professional ability or reputation of, or the quality of services provided by, the entities or individuals whose names appear on the following lists. Inclusion on this list is in no way an endorsement by the Department or the U.
Names are listed alphabetically, and the order in which they appear has no other significance. The information on the list is provided directly by the local service providers; the Department is not in a position to vouch for such information. Internet Financial Scams We receive inquiries every day from people who have been defrauded for hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars by Internet contacts they thought were their friends or loved ones.
Internet scams are attempts by con artists to convince you to send them money. In Nigeria, these scams are also referred to as scams. Click here for scam resources. The most common scams involve someone allegedly in Nigeria who is in some sort of trouble, ranging from detention to extortion or hospitalization. Inevitably, the sender is making an appeal for money.
If this is someone you have not met personally, we urge you to stop corresponding with whoever sent the message, and please do not send any money to Nigeria. Do not believe any offers that require a fee to be paid up front. In many cases, scammers troll the Internet for victims, and spend weeks or months building a relationship. Scammers can be very clever and deceptive, creating sad and believable stories that will make you want to send them money. Before you send funds, check to see if you recognize any of the following signs, and realize that you may be a potential victim of a scam: Photographs of the scammer show a very attractive person, and appear to have been taken at a professional modeling agency or photo studio.
If they provide you with a copy of their passport or visa, you can always contact the U. Close family members are dead or unable to assist. Sometimes, the scammer claims to have a young child overseas who is ill or hospitalized. There is no such thing as a BTA. In other cases, your Internet friend will claim to need a travel allowance, or travel money, to be able to travel to the United States.
Again, there is no such requirement under U. The scammer claims to have been born and raised in the United States, but uses poor grammar and spelling indicative of a non-native English speaker. Although the scammer may claim to be in Nigeria, he or she may ask that the money be sent to an account in another country. Alternatively, the scammer may state he or she is in a third country but request that funds be sent to the Nigeria. The scammer may even claim to be contacting you from a U.
Embassy, where your partner, business associate, or friend is being detained pending payment of some type of fee. Internet scammers are using social networking sites to find victims. Adoption scams are another type of scam to avoid. The perpetrators of child adoption fraud often claim to be indigent parents unable to care for a child or members of the clergy working at an orphanage seeking a good home for a child.
Americans should be very cautious about sending money or traveling abroad to adopt a child from an orphanage they have only heard about through emails. A new twist in the conventional email adoption scam is that once the victim suspects fraud and breaks off communication with the scammers, a new email message will arrive claiming to be from a police agency.
All of these scams have one thing in common — they contain requests for money. Con artists can be very creative and very determined. Do not send anyone money unless you are certain that it is a legitimate request — even if you think you know the person well based on your Internet correspondence.
If you believe you are the victim of an Internet scam: Do not send more money. Unfortunately, any money that you might already have sent is probably not recoverable. End all communication with the scammer immediately, rather than attempt resolution directly. If you feel threatened, contact your local police at once. Do not attempt to personally recover the funds lost. If the scam originated through a particular website, notify the administrators of that website.