Online Scams – One Chicago Area Crime Ring Offered a Full Suite of Online Fraud Schemes

The Big 4 Online Scams: Romance, Business Email Compromise, Job Offers, and Mystery Shopper

The US Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois (Chicago) has indicted ten Nigerians – eight living in the Chicago area – for operating a full-service online scam crime ring. What’s interesting about this crime ring is the breadth of “offerings” it had: romance scams, business e-mail compromise (BEC) scams, employment scams, and mystery shopper scams.

The indictment – available at  – provides explanations for how all four of the online scams work, and examples of each. Notably, the ten defendants had eleven accounts eight different banks: they were smart enough to spread their banking activity between multiple banks, including the five largest US banks.

And there’s not much you can do if a crime ring operates across multiple banks … unless all of those banks are on Verafin’s cloud-based, cross-institutional financial crime management platform used by more than 2,600 financial institutions across the US and Canada. Verafin’s ability to detect crime rings operating across multiple institutions when any one of those institutions may not see its piece of the ring is unique in the industry.