Check Fraud Scheme

While this isn’t really a local piece and more of a national/worldwide piece I still wanted to bring some attention to the issue. Recently there has been an increase in check fraud schemes targeting online auction sites, e-mail and even some snail mail users. While there are many iterations of the scheme they all seem to follow the same basic formula that is shown in the e-mail shown after the jump. Basically the initiator of the fraud sends you a check (or will send you a check) for significantly more than you need and requests a few things.

1. That you cash the check right away. Not deposit the check, cash it.

2. That you leave the bank where you just cashed the check and Western Union the remaining money right away.

In some cases, not involving eBay or the likes, the perpetrator will advise you that they are going to send you a large sum of money for doing this (most likely because you won some sort of bogus prize) or in cases of online auctions they request that you contact DHL with their account number and ship your item to them. What happens in both cases is that you get burned. Not just by the schemer but also by your bank who will be none to happy when they discover (most likely in a few days time) that the check you cashed is bad.

You would be surprised how many people actually fall for this scheme, so don’t let it be you. Read over the e-mail and if you do get one, contact your local law enforcement or your bank, who will put you in touch with fraud investigators. Also contact your e-mail provider and let them know that you are being phished.

On 3/13/07, Jimmy scots <tambolomoscojo1@yahoo.com > wrote:

Dear Seller,

I’m ok with your asking price for the item. I’ll be using this opportunity to let you understand that you’ll be receiving the payment in mode of check from my client and the amount you’ll be receiving will be more than the item fees. Payment will be sent to you from your country in 4 business day (USA) in your funds. Like i told you i’m purchasing on behalf of my client and the excess payment is my own commission with the money i’ll need to pay for our shipping company. So i want you to promise me that you are so honest to deduct just the amount for the item and send the excess money through WESTERNUNION as soon as you receive the payment from my client. The payment will be sent immediately you agree with me to deduct just the amount for the item and send the balance through any WESTERNUNION OFFICE well known to you and you’ll be receiving it the next day.
There won’t be any problem about the shippment. I’ll be handling that with my DHL# so i want you to get back to me asap now with your full mailing information. Email me your full name, address and phone# now if you agree and assure me that you’ll deduct just the amount for the item and send the balance through WESTERNUNION so that the payment can be sent immediately.

Below are the questions i have for you.

1)Is the item in good condition?

2)Is any WESTERNUNION location where you can send the balance money arround you?

3)Can you make sure you get the payment cashed at your bank the sameday you receive it?

4)Can you allow me to send DHL for the pick up and complete the transaction the day you receive the
check?
5)Can you promise me that you’ll only deduct your item fees from the payment and westernunion the balance money the day you receive the payment?

If yes to all my questions, kindly email me back your full name, address and mobile# asap today

Thanks,

eBay <endofitem@ebay.com> wrote:

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