Alert! - Wedding Vendor Scam
This was sent to me from Richard Markel of Association for Wedding Professionals International (AFWPI)
This email is for wedding professionals.
This scam and similar ones goes beyond wedding consultants. If you have a shop, or sell product on or offline you can be a target.
I received a warning from Nancy Tucker of Coordinators Corner about a scam that was attempted by a person outside the US.
I have seen and heard of several others that were attempted by companies in and out of Lagos Nigeria. Here is the warning:
I'd like to get the word out about a scam that is going around and some coordinators have been caught in the snare. I received an e-mail from a man in "Germany" who wanted to set up a wedding for his son ere in Colorado. He gave me sketchy details of what he wanted. It sounded real. After a couple of e-mails, he said that he'd hired his vendors from the UK (being the photographer and videographer) and when I received the check I was to deposit it and send each of them $3000.
(red flags going up!) The cashier's check was sent by a client here in the US. After about 4 weeks, many e-mails and several phone conversations with his "son", I received the check. I had the bank check it and they said they agreed with me that it was bogus. The next day I phoned the "issuing" bank and they confirmed it to be counterfit.
I e-mailed this man that I had received the check but it would take at least 15 days to clear. They actually called me and asked that I write these two checks on my account so they could get the vendors here for the "wedding". I informed them this wasn't going to happen.
Long story short- Be VERY CAREFUL if you receive anything from out of the country. This is originating in Nigeria. Don't get caught because if the check is deposited and you write any checks against it, you are responsible for them.
Tanya W. Porter
Tanya is with WEDDINGS, ETC. LLC and can be reached at email@example.com
Here is additional information on this scam and who to report it to.
To see the description of some of the fraud see http://www.ifccfbi.gov/strategy/wn040209.asp
To report an internet fraud the division of the FBI is http://www.ifccfbi.gov/cf1.asp
They do not have a phone number or a direct email however they have a link for you to Contact them.
Another email from one that was approached follows via another method of getting to you:
I wanted to add a small bit of information regarding the Nigeria fraud. Please also be very careful of Internet Relay Calls. They were originally designed for the hearing impaired. However, these scam artists are using them to get in touch with people in the bridal business. They also are not only from Nigeria they are working out of the Netherlands, and Holland, with more countries to come I am sure I have had this happen three times this past summer alone. They want to order large quantities of wedding merchandise. When you refuse to work with them, they can become very belligerent.
This info came courtesy of firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you Cyndi.
Please pass this email onto all your wedding associates that may not be receiving my emails.
Note: I have heard of this type of scam from a number of other people, on various forums throughout the internet. Be very wary of ANYTHING that remotely resembles this type of deal. There are variations of this basic scam. It almost always includes an out of country relative planning the wedding in the US (not necessarily in your area). YOUR name came to them highly recommended and want your services (money is no object) and either a cashier's check or bank check, which is always bogus. This goes with the saying "if it seems to good to be true, it probably is".
Ed / The Gadget Bag
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