DFSA Alert: DIFC Impersonation Scam

False DIFC letter used to promote “Prize Money” scam 

09 May 2019

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) warns the financial services community and the public of a scam in which the scammers wrongly claim to be from the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC).

According to the scammers’ fraudulent letter, which uses the DIFC logo without authority, the “Dubai International Finance Centre” is awarding people “winnings” of USD 4,500,000 in exchange for an official endorsement/logistic/administrative charge of USD 12,700 along with a photocopy of identification.

This is a classic example of a lottery scam, a typical variant of the advance fee fraud whereby scammers promise the victim a large sum of money in return for a relatively small upfront fee.  Unfortunately, of course, once the scammers receive the small upfront fee, they will never pay the large sum, and generally disappear. 

The DFSA wishes to make clear that the scammers have attempted to add the appearance of legitimacy to this scam by fraudulently impersonating the DIFC.  They did this by improperly using: 

  • the DIFC logo; 

  • a similar name to the DIFC; and 

  • an individual’s name which is similar to that of the President of the DIFC.

The DFSA strongly recommends that you do not respond to any letter regarding the scam, and under no circumstances should you send or give any money to any party in connection with the scam.

The DFSA has a page on its website dedicated to alerts which it has issued about scams. All alerts issued by the DFSA may be accessed by going to: ALERTS

The DFSA has also issued warnings and guidance about the common types of scams, including Advance Fee scams, perpetrated on consumers. For more information on these scams please go to: HOW TO AVOID BEING SCAMMED

If you have any concerns about the authenticity of any correspondence or documents that purport to be issued by the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), DFSA or a DFSA regulated Firm, you should direct your concerns to the DIFC on Tel:+971 4 362 2222 and to the DFSA via the DFSA Complaints function on: COMPLAINTS

Link:

DFSA Notice

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