A Backstage Tour
You're in for a surprise.
How scammers chose their victims.
The 10 steps con artists use to get your money.
What a con artist won't tell you: Questions you can ask a scammer that will make him run from you.
The line between a scam and poor business ethics can be hard to determine.
HOW DO I FIND MY MONEY?
Delays give the bad guys time to hide and spend YOUR money, so the sooner you act the better chance you have of getting your money back.
A good scammer will keep his victim on the hook hoping for the glory money for up to two years, by which time all the money the victim sent is long gone and if any remains, it has been laundered so often that it can be impossible to separate one scam victim's money from another, or legitimate income from stolen income - if the money can be found at all.
24 hours ago or less
If you sent money to a scammer by Western Union or MoneyGram 24 hours ago or less, you have an excellent chance of recovering it by immediately contacting their office. The same may be true if e-Gold or other version of cyber currency was used.
48 hours ago or less
If you sent money bank-to-bank within the last 48 hours or less, your bank may be able to recover it. Bank-to-bank transfers can take up to 3 days, occasionally longer; but you have to act fast.
Within the last 12 months
If you have lost several hundred thousand dollars or several million dollars and the money was sent out of country within the last 12 months, you will need to hire a reputable Financial Asset Recovery Specialist and no reputable Financial Asset Recovery Specialist works on contingency. In other words, don't bother offering him a percentage of the funds he retrieves. He or she will need a hefty expense fee that is not refundable.
Tracking money is very expensive. It is not an endeavor to be undertaken by those who believe their money can be instantly returned or who believe they will be able to get all of it back.
If the money is still in your country, tracking and retrieval can still be expensive but may not be as arduous or as lengthy as international recovery (repatriation).
Very rare cases
There are cases in which those who have lost several thousands of dollars to scammers within their own country can retrieve their money intact. This is very, very rare and depends entirely on the circumstances of the scam, why the money was given to the scammer, what documents (if any) were signed, where everyone is located, and especially - the amount of time that has passed.
Scammers and their savings accounts
Scammers don't have savings accounts. They do not put your money aside for a rainy day. Scammers are thieves who live from moment to moment, victim to victim. Apart from the few truly professional criminals such as the elite of the High-Yield Investment Program fraudsters and the Nigerian scam network bosses, those who have stolen your money spend it immediately.
The money you sent by Western Union or MoneyGram is gone for good once it is picked up and the scammer is out the door. Money sent using either of these systems can be picked up at any one of their offices, not merely the one you sent it to. Once the scammer is out the door, there is no way of tracking him.
Money sent bank-to-bank out of country is immediately moved from the receiving account and may be laundered through any number of other accounts at any number of other banks in any number of other countries. This can be done without the scammer ever having to move from the comfort of his easy chair and laptop.
This is also true of money you sent to a bank within your own country; however, not all scammers are set up for international money laundering and so there is the possibility that all or a portion of your money may be recovered locally.
You have now reached the end of the Backstage Tour.
Thank you for joining us and we hope we answered many of your questions about domestic and international scammers!
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