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Nigerian Scammers Secure Huge Money from Australian Victims

Nigerian e-mail scams, more sophisticated and active, continue to fool vulnerable families in Australia into wiring large amounts of dollars in the hope to earn bigger returns.

Despite police warnings, many Australians keep on transferring money out of the country as they think their dream of getting rich overnight would turn out true. They also think they would get a large inheritance from a lottery win or an investment opportunity claiming to be once in a lifetime.

An estimated US$ 500,000 per month moves out of Queensland alone. Last year, this kind of loss from the state of Queensland was $300,000. The amount is growing year on year, said detective and acting superintendent Brian Hay of the Queensland Police Service, as published by PC World on May 23, 2007.

Brian Hay has talked to above 130 victims who collectively lost $18 Million from such frauds. Unbelievably, these victims don't want to prosecute. In fact, according to Hay, almost 75% still send the defrauders money despite being told such kinds of frauds have victimized them.

There are some victims who remain silent and don't report to police. As a result, very insignificant data exist about these attacks. There is hope for more collaboration in order to save Australian victims of such crime, Hay said.

Queensland Police has joined with the Nigerian agency to exchange information and arrange for more prosecutions. Mr. Addul-Karim Harisu Chukkol, Head, cyber crime team, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Nigeria, said that the commission has arrested thousands of individuals and secured assets worth $4 Billion from e-mail fraudsters, reported PC World on May 23 2007.

Chukkol said that there has been no single instance where a person at any part of this world has procured any money. E-mailers are advised not to trust e-mail from senders claiming to be representatives of the Nigerian government public office. These e-mails generally contain Hotmail and Gmail, reported SecureComputing on May 23, 2007.

Since the EFCC commenced operations roughly in 2003, it has prosecuted 2,000 cyber crooks but due to this, many offenders have moved to countries in West Africa.

Related article: Nigerian Scam Victimizes County Treasurer; Victim Arrested

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