Falling victim to international fraud can be a frightening and life learning event. To report international fraud, proper channels must be followed in order to get any kind of result. If reporting a fraud of national stature, then reporting it to local authorities is the best avenue to follow. However, international crimes, like identity theft, involve federal law enforcement agencies. In order for law officials to investigate and react to reports of international fraud, it helps if the incident is reported immediately. Dealing with international criminals involves cooperation through multiple agencies and the sooner they have the information, the better chance of a good result.
Report fraud or other types of international crimes through local law enforcement authorities first. When reporting the fraud, remember to provide information and other evidence, such as account numbers, that will assist authorities with the investigation. Local police have connections to federal law enforcement agencies they can turn the investigation over to. Once the investigation has been turned over to federal agencies, the proper international law enforcement agencies will become involved. If the country where the crime originated is within the United States' jurisdiction or extradition policies, the criminal, when/if apprehended, can be extradited back to the United States for prosecution.
Identify fraudulent emails by watching who the sender is. Most Internet fraud involves emails where the unknown source is informing the victim that he just won a lottery or has funds available to him. Many of these emails are international in nature. Don't be fooled by these fraudulent emails and report them as soon as possible to law enforcement agencies that deal with Internet crimes. The FBI and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) handle such crimes. The FBI and the FTC have allow you to file complaints on their websites. You can also contact them directly by phone to file a report. In many cases these agencies may not be able to do anything about the email, but sharing the information with them can help create an awareness so others will not fall for the fraud.
Report fraud that has international ties to the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3). The IC3 has partnered up with the FBI, National White Collar Crime Center and the Bureau of Justice Assistance to take reports from citizens who are victims of fraud. The agency then funnels the victim to the correct agency, which will respond to the report. IC3 will request personal information and any relevant information that is necessary to support the complaint.
- Suspicious emails or letters should be kept or stored in a secure place. Any evidence that can be linked to the international fraud should be kept somewhere safe. For emails it is best to store the fraudulent message in file folder in the victims email account or printed off. Any other form of evidence, like a letter or flier, sent through the mail should be kept in a file cabinet or somewhere safe to show to law enforcement authorities. It would also be advisable to make copies of the message or letter just in case the original get misplaced or lost.
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