If you or someone you know has fallen victim to an Iraqi dinar (or Vietnamese dong, Indonesian rupiah, or any other foreign currency) “revaluation” investment scam, the FBI has set up a website to report the seller of these worthless currencies.
Currency revaluation schemes have been around for a long time, and have never once paid off for anyone except the people charging a commission for the sale. Iraqi dinar scams have been going strong since 2003, and the currency has yet to do anything except lose value.
There’s an article at Forbes.com that goes into further detail on this type of scam.
Wisebread is a pretty great website. They post tons of articles on saving money, being frugal, finding deals, getting more out of life for less cash, and occasionally, scams.
They ran a good one not too long ago: 5 Sure-Fire Signs of an Investment Scam. It’s a topic I haven’t explored too deeply yet, and it’s one I’d like to write more about. For the time being, go read their article and learn from it.
Now think about some iffy investment “opportunities” you’ve heard of. How many of Wisebread’s signs did it fall under?
My favorite investment scam is the Iraqi Dinar scam that’s been running riot for several years (and I mean “favorite” in the most sarcastic way possible, by the way). For the most part, these schemes hit all five points.
Absolute promises that the currency will revaluate? Check. “Opportunity” for beyond-massive profit, yet being offered to everyone in the universe equally? Got it. Affinity groups? Yes, you hear about this stuff in social circles. Business practices? Well, selling a supposed investment without an actual license to do so by calling it a “collector’s item?” How sketchy do they have to be? And look at the comments on any article exposing this scam for what it is: hundreds of people insisting that the author (even when said author is an expert writing for a credible source) is the biggest idiot that ever lived in the history of ever. Some of those may be victims clinging to hope, but a lot of them are people running Iraqi Dinar scams attempting to discredit any suggestion that what they’re doing is tantamount to fraud.
Here’s an attempt at an email scam that nobody should ever fall for. Seriously, it’s like they weren’t even trying:
From: “Mr. R. Jan” <[removed]@gmail.com>
Sent 9/6/2009 3:21:48 PM
Subject: ATTENTION NEEDED
My name is Mr. Jan and I am contacting you from Liberia for
a mutual business relationship and investment.
I have some funds realized through contract brokerage and I
need your cooperation to invest the funds.
The first stage requires transferring the funds to your
account for subsequent investment.
I therefore want you to work with me as a partner. On
receipt of your response, I will send you full details of
the transaction and more information about myself. I
am waiting for your prompt response.
I’m not even going to bother picking this thing apart. Yes, it’s a total scam. Yes, you should just delete it. No, it’s not a real investment opportunity.