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Financial Crime News

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This is more than a little bit scary. A criminal, exactly what kind isn't clear, has been reading the major Australian employment website Seek.com.au - and then he (it's almost always a "he") is sending invitations to become involved in money laundering or, possibly, to be a victim of a long-established scheme to defraud his victims. The scam letter is a collection of so many currently trendy phrases that it might be convincing - especially to someone who is in awe of cryptocurrencies, blockchain (as they call it) and so many other trigger words. Oh, and there's an interesting twist to the old version of this crime.

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We can't even be bothered to write about this amazing spam-scam. Just read it and weep - tears of laughter. Alexandra, supposedly at supportf@finditeasy.info, you are hereby nominated for a prize at the annual spam-scam awards.

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The single over-riding principle that makes cryptocurrency accounts attractive to criminals is not the supposed anonymity (that argument is a done deal except for those who don't know what they are talking about) but the fact that, by design, there is, literally, no single body or person with regulatory authority.

What that means is that, while governments and courts (at the behest of victims) can make Asset Recovery Orders, or, as the US government is trying to do with its listing on OFAC of crypto-currency accounts that it claims it has reasonably identified as connected to listed persons, these are after the fact restrictions and to try to enforce them is, by reason of the essence of the distributed ledger, only ad hoc....

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We've introduced this same spam-scammer over the past few days and it's still at it. This time, however, there's no doubt what it's up to: it's trying to sell fixed return investments without any of the statutory information that's required for such promotions. But,then again, why bother complying with financial sector laws when the whole enterprise shows the signs of being fundamentally illegal?

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Somewhere, a new spam-scam factory is pumping out new schemes at the rate of one every couple of days.

They introduce via a domain name that has nothing to do with whatever they are using as the hook for the scam, but they do have certain things in common which enable us to identify them as sourced by the same spam-scam crew. Today's is from philstudio.net under the banner "Portfolio Direct" and is headed "Free guide to direct lending."

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As low-cost mortgage schemes and Pump and Dump scams return to the internet, there's more proof that frauds are cyclical. Today sees the gold spam we've seen in a while. And it even offers a "standby letter of credit."

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HM would not be amused. The UK Treasury, which is increasingly given to adopting American terminology, recently issued an "advisory" relating to jurisdictions with deficiencies in their counter-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing regimes. Hilariously, it was identified as a possible scam by the Thunderbird e-mail client.

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Wherever you are in the world, the so-called Nigerian Scam is alive and well and yesterday's notice from the USA's Internal Revenue Service is the release that will launch a thousand scams - and probably many, many more. It's so serious that the subject line in the e-mail from the IRS raised spam / scam alerts in the Vortex Centrum monitoring system, which can't be good.

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The website for FxUnited (FxUnitedGlobal.com) optimistically says "copyright 2006 to 2020." On its website, it links to a company registration certificate which shows that the company, United Global Holdings Limited was registered in New Zealand under number 5247841 in 2014 and has, since, been removed. But all is not as it seems and the investigation into the huge scam in Malaysia is only one aspect of this case as our own investigations reveal.

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The British government has announced the introduction of software to "detect terrorist content" on "any online platform." According to a statement issued yesterday "Tests have shown this new tool can automatically detect 94% of Da'esh propaganda with 99.995% accuracy. " That's amazing - and one has to ask how such figures can be quantified and proved. But there is good news: while large platforms have developed their own tech, smaller companies will be able to use that developed by the British government and ASI Data Science.

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