Scam Alert -- Avoid Social Media Easy Money Scams

  
     
August 10, 2015


Scammers are giving get-rich-quick schemes a high-tech makeover. By promoting "money flipping" scams on social media, they are appealing to a new, younger audience, according to the National Consumers League. 

How the Scam Works:

You see a photo of a person folding a pile of cash on Instagram. In the caption, the users brag about having "flipped" a couple hundred dollars into thousands. Want to do it, too? It's easy. Just send the account holder a message, and you can get started with a small deposit. 

In a the original version of this scam, con artists asked victims to wire money or use a prepaid debit card. In a new twist, scammers ask you to mail your physical debit card and account PIN, granting direct access to your account. The "investor" claims that he/she is going to deposit a check into the account and will compensate you for your trouble. 

Don't do it! Scammers will appear to deposit a couple thousand dollars and withdraw an equal amount. But the first deposit was a fake. When the bank realizes the check is fraudulent, you will be on the hook for the withdrawn cash. 

Tips to Avoid Money Flipping Scams:   

  • Do a quick search. Before contacting the potential scammer, do a web search of their username or phone number. If it's a scam, chances are that other victims have posted complaints and information online.
  • Don't share your debit card, card number or PIN. No legitimate service would ever ask you to share this information 
  • Be wary of prepaid debit cards. Treat prepaid debit cards like cash. Once you give away the account info, you will not be able to get that money back.
  • If it sounds too good to be true. Well, you know the rest. Use common sense when seeking ways to supplement your income. Anyone who claims to be able to turn a small investment into piles of cash in mere minutes is a scam artist.

For More Information

Read the full alert on Fraud.org, a project of the National Consumers League

To find out more about other scams, check out BBB Scam Stopper (bbb.org/scam).