What are some common medical scams

Welcome to the website of the Federal Foreign Office

Internet fraud attempts are widespread. The scams vary, but in the end the aim is always to get the victims to pay money. The scammers do not shy away from faking personal emergencies such as illness, vital medical interventions, or accidents in order to arouse pity.

Offers are sent by e-mail that promise the addressees multi-million dollar commissions or other financial benefits if the addressees help to transfer company or lottery winnings and other profits to foreign accounts.

In the case of offers of inheritances, gifts or lottery winnings, attempts at fraud are to be assumed. In the next step, contact persons who respond to such e-mails will be asked to reimburse fees for transfers, legal fees, taxes or bribes. After the payment has been made, the contact is usually canceled.

You should be extremely careful with Internet acquaintances who, after intensive e-mail contact and often the establishment of a closer relationship, ask for a money transfer to buy a flight ticket, the cost of applying for a visa, etc. In many cases, these acquaintances have turned out to be fraudulent.

If the German diplomatic missions abroad have become aware of a large number of certain scams in their districts, you will find a leaflet on the website of the diplomatic mission under "Information for German citizens".

The Federal Criminal Police Office, the German police stations and the Federal Office for Information Security warn against these fraudsters on the following pages.

You can find more information on the various search engines on the Internet, in Internet forums and in press reports.