Consular news Embassy 8 May 2008
Consuls bust e-crime
What do you do when a citizen of yours turns up at the consulate expecting to collect an inheritance that doesn't exist?
Increasingly consuls are being called in to deal with online fraud cases which is why the Consular Corps invited Detective Sergeant Stephen Truick of Scotland Yard's Police Central e-crime Unit to discuss ways to combat cyber crime.
DS Truick told consuls that tackling 'Advanced Fee Fraud' - where victims are duped into paying money to internet fraudsters - is very complex due to the global nature of the crime and the fact that fraudsters are difficult to identify.
Recently the Home Office allocated £1.3m to set up a new national crime unit to coordinate a response.
The key to combating e-crime is communication and prevention, said DS Truick, who gave consuls a guide on how to spot fraudulent emails.
He also encouraged consuls to alert the unit if they had information about a new scam so that action could be taken to disrupt the network by disabling telephone numbers, emails or websites.
If you would like to know more or to alert DS Truick to an e-crime operation, email Stephen.firstname.lastname@example.org.