Home Archive ATM Card Advance Fee Scam

ATM Card Advance Fee Scam

by Brett M. Christensen

Email claims that the recipient has been awarded a large sum of money and will be sent an ATM card that will allow access to these funds (Full commentary below).



This is to officially inform you that ATM card number: 3774 2856 7847 9006 worth Two Million Five Hundred Thousand($2.5 Million usd) has been credited in your favor in bid to compensate you on your contract payment since you are next on our inheritance file for the second part of this fiscal Year 2008.The card centre will send you an ATM CARD which you will use to withdraw your money in any ATM MACHINE in the world.

Your personal identification is ATM- 7997. Contact the verification officer Omana Omana (Mr.) on: (commitinheritance@gmail.com) with the following for proper verification and claim processing: Call him immidiately for confirmation.+233-248-931448

Full Name…………….

Delivery Address………



Phone Number………….

Fax Number……………


You are also required to send to the verification officer/agent a means of Identification which should be a scan copy of your Driver’s License or International Passport for proper verification and authentication.



Detailed Analysis:
In a variation on the typical advance fee scam cover story, scammers often claim that the recipient is eligible to receive an Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) card that will allow access to a very large sum of money.

THIS IS TO CONFIRM THE RECEIPT OF YOUR EMAIL DATE 29the SEPT 2008.The potential victim will receive an email like the one included above instructing them to contact a specified agent in order to claim their card.

Various reasons such as unpaid job contracts or unexpected inheritances are given as to why the victim has supposedly been awarded the money. In the example above, the scammers vaguely refer to a “contract payment” which is supposedly somehow connected to an unspecified inheritance. This vagueness is a deliberate tactic on the part of the scammers and is designed to fool gullible victims into believing that they actually may be entitled to funds that they previously had no knowledge of. In other variants of the scam, the email will claim that the recipient has won the money in a lottery and will be sent an ATM card to gain access to his or her “winnings”. Regardless of the reasons given, the claims in these messages are entirely bogus and are designed to harvest personal information and trick victims into sending money to the criminals responsible.

Potential victims will be asked to contact the “agent” and supply information such as name, occupation and contact details. They may also be asked to provide ID such as a scan of a driver’s license or passport, ostensibly to verify their identity and authenticate their claim to the funds. However, this personal information along with other data collected during the course of the scam, may be subsequently used to steal the victim’s identity.

Moreover, victims will be asked to pay an upfront fee that is supposedly required before the ATM card can be released. The scammers use a variety of excuses – such as processing or insurance obligations – to explain why such fees are necessary. Those who comply and actually send the requested fee will most likely receive further requests for money. In the particular scam sequence discussed here, the scammers claim that a fee of $135 is required, supposedly for “re-newing and recofirmation” of the victim’s file. The example below shows a follow-up scam email sent after a victim replied to the original email included above. The message arrived complete with seemingly official Western Union logos and a photograph of a foreign Western Union office thrown in for good measure.

In regards to your mail received and i want you to be informed that your money cannot be send to you without effect the payment of the $135 for re-newing and recofirmation of your file that was deposited in this office the necessary thing you have to do now is to send the needed fee of $135 to us today so that your funds can be finallzed to you immediately.

As soon as the required fee of $135 is send today for the re-newing reconfirmation the payment file of your funds you will start receiving your funds $5100.USD per a day starting from tomorrow.

Below is the information required to send the $235.00 today through Western Union money transfer to make it faster and easier.

ANSWER: …………… GOD.
AMOUNT:…………. $135

Note:The required fee of renewing and reconfirming the payment file of your fund cannot be Deducted from your fund USD$2.500,000.00 , from our side for this is our mode of operation or manipulation.This is in accordance our Country law, with section 13(1)(n) of the National Act as adopted in 1993 and amended on 3RD July 1996 by the constitutional assembly.This is to protect customers.

Please don’t forget to send the MTCN number to us immediately you send the money and make sure that you send with this information to avoid mistake ok. Waiting to have the MTCN.

Sincerely, Mr Ben Moon.
Western Union Payments


Note that the scam email warns that the fee cannot be deducted from the fund itself for legal reasons. Not surprisingly, potential victims often request that fees be deducted from the supposed lump sum. Since the main aim of such activities is to fool people into sending them money, scammers use excuses such as the bogus “National Act” mentioned in the above example to explain why fees must be paid in advance.

Advance fee scams of various types have been around for many years and predate email and the Internet. These ATM card related scams are just one more incarnation in a seemingly endless variety of approaches all designed to gain the same outcomes – financial fraud and identity theft. Internet users should be very cautious of any unsolicited emails that claim that they have been awarded a large sum of money. If you receive such an email, do not reply. Do not provide any personal information or send any money.

Further reading:
Nigerian Scams – 419 Scam Information
Email Lottery Scams – International Lottery Scam Information
Payment Transfer Job Scam Emails – Laundering Scams

Another example of an ATM scam email:


Halifax Bank ATM

This is to officially inform you that we have verified your contract file presently on my desk, and I found out that you have not received your payment due to your lack of co-operation and not fulfilling the obligations giving to you in respect to your contract payment. Secondly, you are hereby adviced to stop dealing with some non-officials in the bank as this is an illegal act and will have to stop if you so wish to receive your payment immediately.After the board meeting held at our headquarters, we have resolved in finding a solution to your problem, and as you may know, we have arranged your payment through our SWIFT CARD PAYMENT CENTRE in Europe, America,Africa and Asia Pacific, which is the instruction given by our former Prime Minsiter Tony Blair of United Kingdom. And this instruction is still ask to be carried out by the new Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain Gordon Brown MP This card centre will send you an ATM CARD which you will use to withdraw your money in any ATM MACHINE in

(1) Full Name as wanted on Card
(2) Address where you want the payment centre to send your ATM CARD.(NO P O BOX)
(3) Phone And Fax Number
(4) Date Of Birth
(5) Occupation
(6) Identification either, Passport photo page, Driver Lincense or National ID. ( IF AVAILABLE )
(7) Bank Name: ( Must have a bank Account )

SEND THE ABOVE INFORMATION TO :alert.halifax@gmail.com

We shall be expecting to receive your information you have stop any further communication with anybody or office. On this regards, do not hesitate to contact me for more details and direction, and also please do update me with any new development.
Thanks for your co-operation.
Note: Because of impostors, we hereby issue you with a private code for security, Your code shall be (CARD 905:2007)Make this code your reference number when contacting us. Failure to do so might cause delay in getting back to you.

Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,