Want to send or receive cash via a money transfer service? Fabulous! You can do so almost anywhere in the world quickly and reliably. However, as with all financial transactions, there are a few key warnings to heed. Some scammers exploit the system for their personal gain, and you’ll want to protect yourself against any possibility of fraud. In fact, according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, in 2011 consumers in the U.S. and Canada lost more than $1.5 billion dollars to scams!
Your best defense is knowledge and awareness. Thankfully you can help lower your chances of falling victim to con artists by simply knowing what NOT to do when sending cash. Here are the top 10 money transfer service “Never Evers”:
- Never send money to people you don’t personally know and trust and haven’t met in-person.
- Never send money to pay for taxes or fees on lottery or prize winnings.
- Never send money for a rental property.
- Never provide your banking information to people or businesses you don’t know.
- Never send money in advance to obtain a loan or credit card.
- Never send money for an emergency situation without verifying that it’s a real emergency.
- Never send funds from a check in your account until it officially clears—which can take several days or longer.
- Never send a money transfer for online purchases.
- Never listen to someone who tells you not to discuss the transaction with a friend, the police, or the agent of the money transfer company.
- Never feel so embarrassed that you were “taken” that you avoid reporting the crime. Reporting the scam helps wire transfer companies and authorities fight fraud and might help prevent someone else from falling victim.
Just how do criminals use these techniques to escape with a consumer’s hard earned cash? Follow this blog over the coming weeks and months to discover the tricks of their illegal trade!
NOTE: Erica’s blog posts appear courtesy of Western Union, a BBB Accredited Business.