How To Spot, Avoid, and Report Fake Check Scams

In a talk through one’s hat check scam, a person you don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate know asks you to deposit a check— sometimes for several thousand dollars, and normally for more than you are owed — and send some of the money to another person. The scammers always have a good narrative to explain why you can ’ thyroxine keep all the money. They might say they need you to cover taxes or fees, you ’ ll motivation to buy supplies, or something else .
imposter checks come in many forms. They might look like business or personal checks, cashier ’ south checks, money orders, or a check delivered electronically. here ’ s what you need to know about imposter confirmation scams .

Types of Fake Checks Scams

fudge checks are used in many types of victimize. here are some examples :

  • Mystery shopping. Scammers pretend to hire people as mystery shoppers and tell them their first assignment is to evaluate a retailer that sells gift cards, money orders, or a money transfer service, like Western Union or MoneyGram. The shopper gets a check with instructions to deposit it in a personal bank account and wire it to someone else. But once the money is wired, the person on the other end can disappear.
  • Personal assistants. People apply online and get hired as personal assistants. They get a check and are told to use the money to buy gift cards or to buy equipment or supplies for their new client. Once the scammers get the gift card PIN numbers, they use them instantly, leaving the “personal assistant” without the money when the bank figures out the check is bad.
  • Car wrap decals. People interested in car wrap advertising are told to deposit checks and send money to decal installers — who don’t exist.
  • Claiming prizes. Sweepstakes “winners” are given checks and told to send money to cover taxes, shipping and handling charges, or processing fees. But that’s not how legitimate sweepstakes work.
  • Overpayments. People buying something from you online “accidentally” send a check for too much and ask you to refund the balance.

Why Do These Scams Work?

These scams work because forge checks broadly look fair like real checks, even to bank employees. They are much printed with the names and addresses of lawful fiscal institutions. They may tied be real checks written on bank accounts that belong to identity larceny victims. It can take weeks for a bank to figure out that the confirmation is a talk through one’s hat .

Fake Checks and Your Bank

By law, banks have to make lodge funds available quickly, normally within two days. When the funds are made available in your account, the bank may say the check has “cleared,” but that doesn’t mean it’s a good check. Fake checks can take weeks to be discovered and untangled. By that time, the swindler has any money you sent, and you ’ ra lodge paying the money second to the bank .
Your best stake : Don ’ t trust on money from a control unless you know and trust the person you ’ ra dealing with.

How To Avoid a Fake Check Scam

  • Never use money from a check to send gift cards, money orders, or wire money to strangers or someone you just met. Many scammers demand that you send money through money transfer services like Western Union or MoneyGram, or buy gift cards and send them the PIN numbers. Once you wire money, or give someone the gift card PINs, it is like giving someone cash. It’s almost impossible to get it back.
  • Toss offers that ask you to pay for a prize. If it’s free, you shouldn’t have to pay to get it.
  • Don’t accept a check for more than the selling price. You can bet it’s a scam.

What To Do If You Sent Money to a Scammer

endowment cards are for gifts, not payments. Anyone who demands requital by endow card is always a swindler. If you paid a swindler with a endowment circuit board, tell the company that issued the tease right off. When you contact the company, tell them the endowment card was used in a victimize. Ask them if they can refund your money. If you act quickly enough, the company might be able to get your money back. besides, tell the store where you bought the endow card adenine soon as possible .
here is a list of endowment cards that scammers often use — with information to help report a scam. If the poster you used is not on this tilt, you might find the endow wag party ’ s contact information on the card itself, or you might need to do some research on-line .
If you wired money to a swindler, call the money transfer company immediately to report the fraud and file a complaint. You can reach the charge department of MoneyGram at 1-800-MONEYGRAM ( 1-800-666-3947 ) or western Union at 1-800-325-6000. Ask for the money transfer to be reversed. It ’ s improbable to happen, but it ’ mho significant to ask.

If you paid a swindler with a money holy order, contact the company that issued the money rate right away to see if you can stop payment. besides, try to stop rescue of the money order : if you sent it by U.S. mail, contact the U.S. Postal Inspection Service at 877-876-2455. Otherwise, contact whatever delivery service you used adenine soon as potential .

Where To Report Fraud

If you think you ’ ve been targeted by a talk through one’s hat discipline victimize, report it to :

Fake Check Scams Infographic

Fake Check Scams Infographic

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Category : Finance

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