Wire Transfer Scams
With the advancement of technology, scammers have developed various methods to deceive and steal personal information for fraudulent purposes. A common technique used by scammers is wire fraud, which has been around for a long time. Scammers use wire fraud as a way to trick individuals into giving away their money easily and quickly. It's important to be aware of this scam so you can protect your hard-earned money.
Scammers use various approaches to initially engage with potential victims. However, regardless of the specific tactic used, the scam ultimately leads to one common outcome – a request for you to wire money. Unfortunately, once you send the money, it's usually impossible to recover.
It is crucial for individuals to keep in mind the following: Never send money via wire transfer to someone you haven't known for an extended period of time.
What is Wire Fraud?
Wire fraud occurs when a scammer pretends to be someone you trust, like a company, vendor, or family member and asks for an urgent wire transfer of money. They often create a sense of urgency by claiming to have an emergency type situation. Sadly, victims later discover that they didn't send the money to a trustworthy person.
In some cases, scammers may target businesses by pretending to be high-ranking executives or trusted vendors. This deception makes it seem like they are sending money to a reliable source within their own organization.
Scammers also pretend to be family members or romantic interests. An example is the "Nigerian Prince" scam, where the scammer can't access funds and promises a big return if money is wired urgently. They may also pose as distant relatives, grandchildren, or someone you briefly met. These scammers create fake emergencies to convince victims to wire funds as a way to provide needed assistance.
What makes wire fraud attractive to scammers is that it's extremely difficult to track. When money is sent through wire transfers, it happens instantly, and scammers frequently move the funds out of the country, making it nearly impossible for victims to get their money back.
At Vision Bank, we want to make sure you stay vigilant against scammers who want to get hold of your personal information. Here are some red flags to help you identify and so you don't put your money in danger.
If you come across any of these warning signs, it's a strong indication that it might be a scam:
- You are asked to wire money.
- If you receive a check related to a payment request. Scammers often send fake checks for more money than needed, claiming it's for fees or expenses. They ask you to deposit the check and send them some of the money through wire transfer. The check could be a cashier's check, personal check or money order.
- If someone contacts you and says you need to provide a confirmation code or a money transfer control number (MTCN) before you can get your money, they are lying. It's important to know that once you send money through a wire transfer, it can be picked up by the recipient right away.
- If you receive a call or email that seems to come from another country, or if the email has a lot of spelling mistakes, it's a sign that something might not be right.
- If someone communicates with you using TTY service, which is typically used by people with hearing impairments, it can be a sign of a scam. Scammers like to use TTY because it can hide any accents and makes it difficult to trace their calls. If they only follow up with emails instead of phone calls, it's important to be cautious.
At Vision Bank, we are working to protect our communities from scams in an effort to help you ensure your financial security. We are committed to raising awareness about the tactics used by scammers and to provide valuable information to help you stay informed and vigilant. By staying educated and alert, we can work together to prevent fraud and safeguard our hard-earned money. If you ever suspect any fraudulent activity or have concerns about wire transfers, please don't hesitate to reach out to us. Together, we can keep our community safe and secure.