by Adediwura Adeaga
Have you ever received a call from ‘your bank’ asking you to ‘confirm’ your ATM pin? Of course, it’s not from your bank. It’s from a scam artist.
It is no longer news that scam artists are on the prowl like the devil, swindling innocent people on the pretense of a product or service which they claim to operate such as the sale of mobile phones, laptops, automobiles, money doubling or even as customer care officers of your bank.
These fraudulent acts sometimes happen via phone calls, on social media platforms or during robbery attacks. For instance, there are cases of people who are forced to transfer money to another account at gun point.
If you or someone you know has experienced this unfortunate incident, here is how to recover your money.
1. Don’t keep it to yourself
Most victims panic after they discover that they’ve been swindled by a fraudster. However, do not panic. Swing into action by informing your close friends or relatives who have legal or security connections. You know those folks who know a criminal lawyer or have contacts in the police or EFCC? They are the ones you should be talking to
2. Don’t bombard the scammer with calls
This is vital because by the time you begin to chat excessively with the scammer, or you bombard the scammer with too many calls he or she might decide to block you or destroy any means of you contacting him. Remember that you need his contact details to be able to trace him. Don’t let the fraudster know about your motive of reporting the case to legal authorities. Keep your conversation civil.
3. Report to any legal authority with evidence
Whether or not you have the scam artists number, report the case to any legal authority close to where you are. Report to the nearest police station and to the EFCC. Take along evidence such as the conversation history, transaction history and any evidence that can help the investigation to see that you’ve been swindled. They will get your statement which includes you narrating all that happened, the scammer’s location and contact details, and assist you in getting the right things done, such as contacting the fraudster’s bank thereby requesting for an immediate freeze on the account. The account will be rendered useless and legal actions will be taken with immediate effect.
4. Send a mail to your bank’s E-fraud team as well as the scammer’s bank
All banks now have an e-fraud team who now respond swiftly to any distress emails or calls. You can get your bank’s e-fraud email address or number by visiting the official website of your bank. Doing this makes it easier for banks to be aware of what is happening and they will direct you on steps or things to do to recover your money. They can further help you place the scammer’s account on a ban for less than 24 hours after evidence has been sent to them, before getting an official letter from the police and court (which will be done by the police).
5. Get a police report & court order
You will need a police report and court order to request for a recall of funds which you paid into the scammer’s bank account
6. Track the scammer
Legal authorities can track the scammer by getting his exact location thereby making it easier for the fraudster to be arrested. This will be done through the scammer’s contact details. This is the major reason why you don’t want to bombard the fraudster with too many calls or messages.
We hope you found these tips useful. If so, share with those closest to you.