Do you know how to spot a phishing attempt? Are you aware of the potential convictions associated with money muling? Make sure you know the facts so that you don’t get scammed.
Nottinghamshire Police have made the University aware of recent phishing campaigns targeted at international students. The scam usually begins with a phone call from a British number asking the victim to contact the police in their home country – the victim is then given a contact number.
Once the victim contacts this number, they are usually told that their bank account has been involved in criminal activity and that they must hand over their bank account details to the police. This is a scam. Do not share your bank account details with anybody.
Other victims are asked to transfer their money to the police. This is also a scam. The police will never ask you to transfer your money to them. Do not do it.
In addition to this, you should never accept money into your account from an individual that you do not know. In 99% of cases this is a money laundering trick known as money muling, where you will be asked to move the money out of your account and into a third account. This in itself is an offense and you could be prosecuted. The maximum sentence for participating in money muling is 14 years in prison.
Here are some tips to help you protect yourself:
- Be extremely cautious about offers or opportunities to make easy money and never give your financial details to anyone you don’t know and trust
- Legitimate employers won’t ask you to use your own bank account to transfer their money – don't accept any job offers that ask you to do this
- Be especially wary of job offers from people or companies overseas as it will be harder for you to find out if they really are legitimate
If you think you may have received illegitimate money into your account, contact your bank in the first instance and ask them to identify the transaction. If they cannot identify the transaction, call the police on 101.
If you receive any phone calls that you suspect to be fraudulent, report them to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or via the Action Fraud website.
Posted on Friday 24th May 2019