Beware of Green Dot MoneyPak Scams!

April 26, 2013

Your BBB wants to remind you to beware of scammers using the Green Dot MoneyPak prepaid cards you can purchase at local stores. Using a prepaid card is a convenient way to pay bills online without threat of risk to your bank account. But scammers have found a way to get that money from you too! Green Dot spokesman states, “Fraudsters will call or email you saying that you won a lottery or can buy discount merchandise at their phony websites – but you need to pay fees to get your prize or purchase that merchandise via MoneyPak –and only MoneyPak, then they ask for the 14-digit code.” Once you have given them that code – the crooks can then transfer your MoneyPak funds to their own prepaid cards.

MoneyPak offers these 7 tips to help protect you from fraud!

  • Never give your MoneyPak number to someone you don’t know.
  • Never give receipt information about your MoneyPak purchase to another party.
  • Use your MoneyPak only to reload your prepaid cards or accounts you control.
  • Refuse any offer that asks you to buy a MoneyPak and share the number or receipt information by email or phone.
  • To use your MoneyPak with PayPal or eBay or other online merchants, transfer the money to your PayPal account before you pay the merchant. Don’t email your MoneyPak number directly to any merchant.
  • Don’t use the MoneyPak to pay taxes or fees to claim “winnings” on a foreign lottery or prize promotion. Unless it’s an approved MoneyPak partner, don’t use MoneyPak for any offer that requires you to pay before you get the item.
  • Check this list of approved MoneyPak partners before you use your MoneyPak to pay.

To avoid falling for MoneyPak scams, consumers should:

  • Be wary of websites or Craigslist advertisements linking to websites where customers are specifically asked to pay with a MoneyPak card.
  • Never give their MoneyPak number to someone they don't know.
  • Remember that advance-fee loan offers are illegal and targeted at customers and companies struggling with debt and poor credit.
  • Remember that if you're told you have pay to a fee -- via MoneyPak or wire transfer -- to collect a cash prize or sweepstakes winnings,you're being scammed.
  • Avoid offers that don't accept credit card payments and require you to purchase a MoneyPak and provide the card number via email or by phone.
  • Beware of websites requesting MoneyPak as a form of payment even if they display the MoneyPak or Green Dot logo. Consumers should check for a list of approved MoneyPak partners.
  • Treat their MoneyPak cards like cash. Unlike credit cards, MoneyPak transactions can never be reversed.

If you are aware of a possible scam, alert Green Dot. If you believe you are a victim of fraud contact your local police to file a claim and complain to your state’s consumer protection bureaus and the Federal Trade Commission.

ABOUT BBB: For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau has been helping consumers find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. In 2012, consumers turned to BBB 124 million times for Business Reviews on more than 4.5 million companies and Charity Reports on 11,000 charities, all available for free at The Council of Better Business Bureaus is the umbrella organization for 114 local, independent BBBs across the United States and Canada, as well as home to its national programs on dispute resolution and industry self-regulation.