Students Beware! Are you at risk of becoming a money mule?
We are aware of a growing scam which seeks to recruit individuals, through illicit job adverts, to money-launder thousands of pounds to criminal gangs abroad – the proceeds of which fund an international trade in drugs, people trafficking and terrorism. People who get involved in this type of scam are commonly referred to as money mules. Research shows that these fraudsters are targeting students, especially international students.
The fake job offers, often made online using titles such as ‘Money Transfer Agent’ or ‘Payment Processing Agent’, turn participants into so-called ‘money mules’.
The recipient of the offer is invited to receive money into their bank account and transfer it to another account, retaining a proportion for themselves. In reality, the money received is stolen, often the result of fraud on accounts, and is then laundered to overseas bank accounts.
This activity is illegal and carries a number of consequences, including freezing of students’ bank accounts, difficulty in opening new accounts in the future (affecting graduates’ ability to get a job, to arrange a mortgage, to secure insurance etc.) and, in the worst cases, a prison sentence of up to ten years.
Click here to find out more about money laundering and money mules.
If you believe you have been the victim of any type of fraud you should contact Action Fraud to report the incident and/or seek further advice. We can also provide advice to any Queen's student who thinks they may have been the victim of fraud - just get in touch.