While advances in technology now allow us to zap money from our bank accounts to our friends and family members with the touch of a button, some people continue to rely on money transfer services. But as we’ve reported several times in the past, these companies are often the service of choice for scammers looking to get their hands on your hard-earned money. One such outfit, MoneyGram, today agreed to revamp its policies and provide $13 million in restitution to consumers who were harmed by fraudsters using the service. [More]
Getting a dog from a breeder can run you thousands of dollars, so it might be tempting when someone offers to sell you a baby puppy for a fraction of that. But if that seller is just some random person who demands that you wire them a cash payment, you’re probably getting rooked. [More]
An employee at a New Mexico Walmart apparently thought he’d found a loophole in the store’s MoneyGram service that would allow him to print out bogus money orders without being detected. He was wrong, though he did manage to scam the retailer out of $106,000 before being arrested. [More]
A lot of international fraud scams involve having to wire money to the scammers, and they’ve become so commonplace that operators of wire services like Western Union train employees to keep an eye out for red flags indicating a possible scam might be occurring. But we think this warning sign from Walmart and MoneyGram might be a little too over-cautious. [More]
MoneyGram International announced today that it would pay $18 million to the FTC to settle charges it allowed wire fraud to happen between 2004 and 2008. MoneyGram’s press release notes that they disagree with the FTC’s view of the matter, but $18 million is a hell of a lot of money to pay if you don’t think you were in the wrong. The press release from the FTC, on the other hand, provides plenty of detail illustrating MoneyGram’s negligence, as well as the criminal behavior of some of its employees who were in on the frauds.
The BBB has issued a warning about a distressing telephone scam that’s increasing in popularity. The target? Grandparents. Scammers based in Canada are thought to be randomly dialing US phone numbers until they reach someone who sounds like a senior citizen. They then pose as a grandchild who has been in a car accident and needs emergency money.
The money transfer services provider’s stock lost half its value Jan. 15 after the company disclosed a plan to recapitalize its balance sheet that depends on its ability to shed its risky loan portfolio.