The United States Federal Trade Commission, FTC, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC and the Consumer Protection Council, CPC, in order to increase cooperation and communication as a way of stamping out cross-border fraud.

The MoU signed on Wednesday, August 28, 2013, provides for a Joint Implementation Committee to identify concrete areas of collaboration. It will also establish joint training programs and provide assistance regarding specific cases and investigations.

Signed by FTC Chairwoman, Edith Ramirez; Director General of the Consumers Protection Council, Dupe Atoki and Chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Lamorde, the MoU, according to Nigeria’s Ambassador to the United States, Professor Adebowale Adefuye, is the first of its kind to include a foreign criminal enforcement authority.

EFCC chairman Lamorde, while commending the partnership, said “it will build on our existing collaboration with FTC and with U. S. criminal enforcement authorities”.

According to FTC chairman, Edith Ramirez, “Cross-border scammers use fraudulent e-mails and other insidious scams to bilk consumers all over the world, while undermining confidence in legitimate businesses. This MoU will help our agencies address this scourge, and better protect consumers in both the U.S and Nigeria”.

It would be recalled that the FTC already has working relationship with the two Nigerian agencies on policy and enforcement matters in various fora, including the African Consumer Protection Dialogue, the International Mass Marketing Fraud Working Group, the London Action Plan (LAP) in anti-spam network and the International Consumer Protection and Enforcement Network.