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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 16 December 2018

Fake UN and DIFC logos being used in money clearance scam

Fraudsters issue phony certificates to dupe people into investments

The Gate in DIFC. Only one Abraaj unit is registered there. Sarah Dea / The National
The Gate in DIFC. Only one Abraaj unit is registered there. Sarah Dea / The National

Dubai's finance authority have issued an alert that scammers are targeting residents with false documents and fake international money laundering clearance certificates bearing logos of the United Nations and the Dubai International Finance Centre.

As part of the con, an individual is contacted with the claim that an amount of $6.5 million has been cleared from money laundering and terrorism charges and that the recipient can receive the funds belonging to a person mentioned in the certificate.

In order to receive the money, the scammers ask the person to invest in a company called First Security Service that they say is incorporated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority.

In a warning to the public, the financial services authority said: “The DFSA wishes to advise that the DIFC authority does not issue international money laundering clearance certificates for the purpose of clearing individuals from involvement in any terrorist activities and the false certificate appears to have been produced for a fraudulent and malicious purpose.”

The fake clearance certificate issued also bears a phony signature of the 'DIFC secretary general'.

“There is no such authority as the DIFC secretary general,” the authority cautioned.

“The DFSA strongly advises that you do not respond to any communications from First Security Service or relating to this scam, and under no circumstances should you send or give any money to any party in connection with the scam.”

The financial authority makes it clear that it does not incorporate companies and therefore does not issue certificates of incorporation and the firm First Security Services has never been, authorised or regulated by the DFSA.

“The signature on the fake Certificate of Incorporation is not the signature of the chairman of the DFSA,” the authority warned.

“The name of the individual which appears on the fake international money laundering clearance certificate has been used without authority.”

There is also no such procedure such as the DIFC Security Service Act for transfer or receipt of money.

Residents and financial services company can access the DFSA website page dedicated to alerts about scams to check updated information.

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