Warning: Scams, hoaxes and frauds involving MSF

Please be aware there have been cases of individuals posing as Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) staff in order to scam people out of money.

MSF has received reports of third parties attempting to fraudulently obtain money by pretending it is for us via email, social networking websites or apps, or in person at public locations.


Examples of scams

The following is a list of scams and hoaxes that have been brought to our attention (please note this list is not exhaustive):

  • People carrying out what appear to be fraudulent collections of money in public locations, while pretending to represent MSF.
  • People posing as MSF staff in emails asking for reimbursements for donations, sometimes naming actual MSF staff or senior management in their appeals in order to bring a sense of credibility.
  • People posing as MSF staff requesting money to pay for individual medical procedures for fictitious patients.
  • People posing as MSF staff who have been detained on their way home from overseas work and asking for money to be transferred in order to secure their release from detention. 
  • People posing as MSF staff, or acting on behalf of MSF staff, on social networking websites or apps in order to lure unsuspecting members of the public to send funds to cover the travel costs of the alleged MSF staff member to return from a field mission.
  • People posing as MSF and approaching suppliers to fraudulently solicit services in MSF’s name, including attempts to book seats in MSF’s name with travel companies.

All MSF staff know that they should call their home MSF office if they have problems like losing their passport or trouble with a visa. We then provide all the support they need to get home.

MSF staff in the field will also have access to funds in an emergency situation and so have no need to request financial support from anyone, for either themselves or their patients.


What to do if you are affected

Unfortunately there is nothing we can do to stop scams such as these and others from happening. If you are unsure if you are the subject of a scam or fraud involving a supposed MSF staff member, please get in contact with us by telephone (+852-2959-4229) or email (office@hongkong.msf.org), and report to the police if you suffered any loss.