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FinCEN Issues Fraud Alert

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) reminds the public to be alert to ongoing financial scams that attempt to solicit funds from unsuspecting victims.

FinCEN has been receiving calls and reports of financial scam attempts conducted via telephone. In this scam the caller represents himself/herself as an employee of FinCEN and asks for the victim by name, either at the victim's home or work number. The caller will identify an outstanding debt; this debt may be actual or bogus. The caller will provide the victim with the victim's account, Social Security or other similar number and demand that immediate payment be made. The caller's knowledge of the victim's name, telephone number, account description and personal information serve to legitimize the caller.

FinCEN also has become aware of another financial scam conducted via e-mail and telephone in which an individual claiming to be a representative of the U.S. Department of the Treasury or FinCEN informs the victim that he/she has received a large Treasury Department grant. To obtain the grant, the victim is instructed to provide bank account information and make some type of initial payment or donation.

Recipients of these calls, letters, or e-mails should not respond to such messages, and should not send money or provide any personal or confidential information. Those who believe that they are or have been a victim of a financial scam, should report this information to local, State, or Federal law enforcement authorities.

FinCEN does not send unsolicited requests and does not seek personal or financial information from members of the public. FinCEN does not have authority to freeze assets or block funds transfers. In addition, fraudulent correspondence may purport to be from an overseas office of FinCEN. FinCEN does not have any offices outside of the United States.

For additional information on scams, please see the following: