Counterfeit check scams vary, but the basic premise includes two constant elements: a counterfeit check and a wire transfer. The victim is instructed to deposit the check into his bank account. Before the bank is notified the check is counterfeit, the scammer asks the victim to send a wire transfer, gift card or money app payment for a portion of the check amount. The scam exploits the rule that a wire transfer cannot be rescinded, so when the check is returned as counterfeit, it is debited from the victim’s bank account, leaving him responsible for the loss.
Below are common variations of this scam:
Internet-based Auction Sales
Internet-based Job Opportunities with a Bonus
Mystery Shopping Jobs
Bogus Check Scam Protection Tips
- Be skeptical when accepting checks from a stranger; even cashier’s checks can be counterfeited.
- Don’t let impressive corporate names, official certifications, or unusual buyer circumstances lull you into a false sense of security in the pursuit of “easy” money.
- Remember, if a job involves sending money to your employer, it’s probably a scam.