Identity Theft in Advance Fee Scams

This notice is issued by the Financial Supervision Commission (“the Commission”) in accordance with the powers conferred upon it under Section 22 of the Financial Supervision Act 1988.


On 11th September 2002 the Commission issued a Public Warning regarding a, so-called, “identity theft” scam. That Warning may be viewed on the Commission web site at

The Commission have been notified by the Office of the Supervision of Financial Institutions Canada (“OSFI”) that they have identified a variation of the aforementioned scam whereby the perpetrators of “advance fee” scams have been posing as legitimate financial institutions or government entities in order to make it more difficult for their victims to know with whom they are dealing.

In the scam warned of by OSFI, the perpetrators advertise the offer of loans using the names of legitimate financial institutions or government entities but with false contact details.  OSFI advise that consumers should be aware that classified advertising for loan opportunities does not guarantee the legitimacy of the advertiser. They go on to warn that the public should verify the name and contact details of the institution offering a loan by, for example, checking with the lists of regulated financial institutions published by relevant regulatory bodies and, where any continuing doubt exists, contacting the regulated financial institution using verifiable contact details.

OSFI have issued a warning notice to the public on this subject which is available (in Adobe Acrobat format) on their web site at:

If you suspect that you may be the potential victim of identity theft or attempted identity theft you should not delay in contacting your local Police for advice. If you are on the Isle of Man you may contact the Financial Crime Unit by writing to:

The Officer In Charge Isle of Man Constabulary Financial Crime Unit PO Box 51 Douglas Isle of Man IM99 2TD or by telephoning: 686000.

Financial Institutions on the island who become aware of attempts at identity theft, as described above, may wish to consider submitting a formal disclosure to the Financial Crime Unit.