Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) Updates

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

Hershel Escrow falsely claims to be insured by banks in the DIFC

08 May 2019

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) alerts the financial services community and members of the public to false claims made by Hershel Escrow.

Hershel Escrow’s website (https://hershelescrow.com/) includes the following false statements:
• its office is located in the DIFC; and
• all escrows (client assets placed in custody or trust until specified conditions are met) are deposited in a “DFSA-insured bank”.

Hershel Escrow is not and has never been authorised by the DFSA. Additionally, Hershel Escrow is not located within the DIFC jurisdiction. Further, the DFSA does not “insure” any person, including any bank.

The DFSA strongly recommends that people do not reply to any communication concerning the false claims, and under no circumstances should they give any money to any party involved.

In addition, the DFSA recommends that people can take certain steps to protect themselves from scams, for example:
• Checking the relevant regulatory status and location of a person before doing business with them;
• Only doing business with firms or individuals they trust.  Dealing with people they have never met may carry a higher risk; they should be particularly cautious when receiving unsolicited communications; and
• Obtaining independent professional advice before entering into any investment or transaction.

The DFSA has a page on its website dedicated to Alerts in relation to scams, including scams which misuse the name of the DFSA and/or the DIFC.  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

Arqaam Capital Limited and the DFSA Impersonated in a Scam

18 Apr 2019

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) informs the financial services community and the public of a scam wherein the scammers falsely claim to be an Authorised Firm, based in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and regulated by the DFSA.

The scammers operate a website (in both English and Arabic) using the names “Arqaam Trading” or “Arqaam General Trading” and offer consumers access to a platform for trading Contracts for Difference (CFDs).  If a consumer contacts the scammers, then the scammers also send marketing materials to the consumer (in both English and Arabic).  In doing so, the scammers are fraudulently using names which are similar to that of a legitimate DIFC incorporated and DFSA regulated firm called Arqaam Capital Limited.

The DFSA informs you that “Arqaam Trading” is not and has never been:
• licensed or authorised by the DFSA;
• incorporated in the DIFC, or registered by the DIFC Registrar of Companies; and/or
• licensed or registered by the DIFC Authority.

The scammers have also used the logo of the DFSA, and two other legitimate international financial services authorities, without authority and for a malicious purpose.  A copy of the webpage can be found
 here.

The DFSA advises you not to reply to any communications regarding this scam, and under no circumstances should you transfer any money to any party involved in the scam.

The DFSA has a page on its website devoted to alerts in relation to scams, including scams which misuse the name of the DFSA and/or the DIFC. 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

Amana Financial Services (Dubai) Limited and the DFSA Impersonated in a Scam

15 Apr 2019

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) warns the financial services community and the public of a scam in which the scammers falsely claim to be an Authorised Firm, based in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and regulated by the DFSA.

The scammers offer trading services to potential investors under the trading name “Amana Trade”.  In doing so, the scammers have impersonated a legitimate DIFC incorporated and DFSA regulated Authorised Firm, namely, Amana Financial Services (Dubai) Limited, by:

• using the name “Amana Trade” which is similar to “Amana Financial Services (Dubai) Limited”; and
• falsely representing that it is a DFSA Authorised Firm. 

The DFSA informs you that “Amana Trade” is not a DIFC incorporated company, and has never been:
• licensed or authorised by the DFSA; or
• licensed or registered by the DIFC Registrar of Companies.

The DFSA strongly advises you not to respond to any communications from “Amana Trade” relating to this scam, and under no circumstances should you send any money to the scammers.

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

The DFSA encourages consumers to refer to the list of regulated Firms and Authorised Individuals licensed by the DFSA that is available on the DFSA’s PUBLIC REGISTER

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 Alert

ALERTS

DIFC Impersonated in an Advance Fee Scam

17 Dec 2018

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) alerts the financial services community and the public about an advance fee scam in which scammers use fraudulent emails and documents purporting to come from the Dubai International Financial Centre Authority (DIFC Authority).

The scammers offer consumers access to loans of up to USD 125,000,000.  They provide a fake loan agreement document that fraudulently uses the DIFC’s logo, and the name of the Governor of the DIFC.
The scammers tell consumers they need to pay the following fees in order to obtain the loan:

• USD 10,000 for handling fees which the scammers say will not be refunded; and
• USD 400,000 for expenses required to facilitate the loan.  The scammers say that this fee is refundable.
The scammers use a false DIFC letter allegedly from the DIFC Authority’s “Loan Committee” as part of the scam.  A copy of the false letter can be found here.

The DFSA informs you that:
• the DIFC Authority does not provide loans.  The  DIFC Authority therefore does not levy any fees or charges whatsoever in relation to loans; and
• the identity of the Governor of the DIFC has been used without authority and for a malicious purpose.

The DFSA strongly advises that individuals do not respond to any communication regarding the scam, and under no circumstances should they send any money to any party involved in 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 perpetrated on consumers. For more information on these scams, please go to: HOW TO AVOID BEING SCAMMED

The DFSA encourages consumers to refer to the list of regulated Firms and Authorised Individuals licensed by the DFSA that is available on the DFSA’s: PUBLIC REGISTER

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

ALERTS

DFSA and two UAE Government Authorities Impersonated in a Fraudulent Scam

21 Nov 2018

The Dubai Financial Service Authority (DFSA) alerts the financial services community and members of the public about a fraudulent scheme in which the DFSA and two UAE government authorities have been impersonated.

The scammers offer consumers access to loans of up to USD 20,000,000.  However, once a consumer takes up a loan, the scammers advise the consumer that the transfer of the funds has been put “on hold”, and they ask consumers to pay the following “clearance fees” for the loan funds to be released:
• USD 60,000 to one legitimate UAE government authority;
• USD 26,500 to another legitimate UAE government authority; and
• USD 54,300 to the DFSA “for the official registration and approval of the investment contract with the DFSA”.

The scammers use the following fake documents as part of the scam:
• A false letter from the DFSA’s “Fund Monitoring Unit”. A copy can be found here.
• A false letter from a legitimate UAE government authority. A copy can be found here.
• A false letter from the “Foreign Investment Remittance Department” of another legitimate UAE government authority. A copy can be found here.

The scammers fraudulently use the name of the current Chief Executive of the DFSA, and falsely claim that he is the Head of the DFSA’s “International Funds Transfer Supervision”.

The DFSA informs you that:
• there is no department called “International Funds Transfer Supervision” at the DFSA;
• there is no unit called the “Fund Monitoring Unit” at the DFSA;
• the DFSA does not approve or register investment contracts; and
• the DFSA does not charge clearance fees for fund transfers.

The DFSA also informs you that the name of the DFSA’s Chief Executive has been used without authority and for a malicious purpose.

The DFSA strongly advises that individuals do not respond to any communication regarding the scam, and under no circumstances should they send any money to any party involved in the scam.

The DFSA has a page on its website dedicated to alerts that 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 perpetrated on consumers. For more information on these scams, please go to: HOW TO AVOID BEING SCAMMED

The DFSA encourages consumers to refer to the list of regulated Firms and Authorised Individuals licensed by the DFSA that is available on the DFSA’s PUBLIC REGISTER

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 Alert

ALERTS

Al Hail Islami Finance Co. Ltd. Falsely Claims to be Authorised by the DFSA

11 Oct 2018

 

 

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) alerts the financial services community and members of the public about a fraudulent advance fee scam promoted by Al Hail Islami Finance. The company falsely claims to be located in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and falsely uses the name of the DFSA in its scam.

Al Hail Islami Finance falsely claims on its website (https://alhailislamifinanceltd.com/) that:
• it is authorised and regulated by the DFSA; and
• its office is located in the DIFC.

Al Hail Islami Finance is not, and has never been, authorised or regulated by the DFSA.  Further, Al Hail Islami Finance does not hold a commercial licence from the DIFC Registrar of Companies to operate a business in or from the DIFC, and it appears that it has no office located in the DIFC.

Al Hail Islami Finance informs its consumers that it:
• specialises in investment management, project funding, and leasing bank instruments;
• offers services like fund raising, public leasing, investment management, and loans; and
• requires payment of advance “notary and registration” fees in the amount of USD3,750 for loans.

The scammers provide consumers with false documents including fictitious loan approval letters, acceptance letters, loan agreements, and false bank confirmation letters. The false documents, which fraudulently use the name of the DIFC and a UAE bank, can be viewed here.

The DFSA advises that:
• Al Hail Islami Finance is a fake DIFC company.  The DFSA strongly advises that individuals do not respond to any communication regarding the scam, and under no circumstances should they send any money to any party involved in the scam; and
• the scammers have used the name of the DFSA and the DIFC without any authority.
The DFSA has a page on its website dedicated to Alerts in relation to scams, including scams which misuse the name of the DFSA and/or the DIFC.  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