Silence is fraud's best friend.  Word of mouth is fraud's worst enemy.  Pass the word!


About Us



Site Map

Contact us Report Email Fraud Scam Solution Center Volunteers

Custom Search

ScamSpeak Home page





Dictionary of Financial Scam Terms


List of scams (partial)


Payment Processing & other Counterfeit Draft Scams / Work at home jobs: processing payments, collections, donations, investments, forwarding checks and money orders, forwarding packages, forwarding money received by Western Union, writing and signing checks, Secret shopper jobs, forwarding cash received in packages and envelopes


Lottery Scams


Green Card Lottery Scam: Truth and Lies in simple words


FDIC Special Alerts List of Counterfeit Checks




The Fraud Victim's Manual


The Backstage Tour

Fraud secrets con artists don't want you to know!







ALL funds wire transfer systems are used for money laundering

Wire transfer systems: Introduction   Fedwire   SWIFT   Other wire transfer systems



Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication



What is a S.W.I.F.T?

S.W.I.F.T. (or SWIFT) stands for Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication.  It is a non-profit organization comprised of member financial institutions.  It was established in 1973 by European bankers who needed a more efficient and secure system for inter bank communications and transfer of funds and securities.  Until then, all inter bank communications were by telephone, telex, courier, or mail.

Whereas a Fedwire contains no instructions past the basic funds transfer itself, SWIFT is a messaging service.  Each type of message is a condition of wire transfer.  One cannot refer to a SWIFT message as a "Conditional SWIFT" per se, since all SWIFT's carry conditions.


Swift Messages

SWIFT messages are preset and referred to by category numbers called MT numbers.  For instance, MT800's only deal with Traveler's Checks, MT300's only deal with Foreign Currency Exchanges.

Each type of message or condition in each category is preset as well.  For instance, there are 89 different messages available under the category MT500.  This does not include the occasional sub code.

Certain phrases are allowable; however, but these must be short and to the point, not exceeding a certain number of letters, and the phrases must be acceptable under SWIFT standards.

Each MT category has its own manual of standards.  Depending on the size of the financial institution, each department may only be familiar with the MT manual that pertains to wire transfers made by that department.

What this means is that one cannot write SWIFT instructions that do not work with the preset messages and expect the sending bank to accept them, or the receiving bank to respond.

For instance, HIGH-YIELD INVESTMENT PROGRAM fraud often involves wiring funds to a foreign bank in exchange for a Prime Bank Guarantee.  Sorry folks, that doesn't work.  One can wire funds in exchange for a specific financial instrument, provided the funds are consistent with the cost of the instrument, and provided all the correct arrangements have been made for the issuance of that instrument according to International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) rules.


What does a SWIFT look like?

A SWIFT consists of a one-page document containing the name and code of the originating bank, the date and time, the address and code of the receiving bank, the name and internal code of the officer initiating the transmission, the names and numbers of the accounts involved in the transfer, a description of the asset being transferred, the MT category of the transmission, and acceptable, standardized phrases as described above.


Wire transfer systems: Introduction   Fedwire   SWIFT   Other wire transfer systems




We are not attorneys and don't pretend to be.  In our experience, the information and guidance offered on this site have proven to be effective; however, we always recommend that you consult with an attorney.

If you have doubts about Fraud Aid, Inc. do not hesitate to contact federal (FBI, Secret Service, RCMP) Scotland Yard, or local law enforcement to check us out.

Information provided about lotteries and lottery scam: Fraud Aid, Inc. is not affiliated with any pay-to-play or free online lottery or Sweepstakes games and derives no income from any pay-to-play or free online lotteries or Sweepstakes or any of their participating sponsors with the possible exception of a sponsor's independent advertising unassociated with any drawings promotion; nor does Fraud Aid promote or sponsor any lotteries or Sweepstakes or numbers drawing of any kind.

Reporting, crime-fighting, and victim resource links

Copyright 2000 - 2011 Fraud Aid, Inc.  -  All Rights Reserved

Privacy Policy Disclaimer  Spam Policy