Another twist on stimulus scams…this one arrives by mail.
It’s a fake check, but it looks very real.
South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs spokesman Charles Ellison explains, “What they will do is instruct you to cash this check and then wire a portion back to cover taxes, filing fees and even insurance for postage of a larger amount of money in the future. What they want you to do is to cash the fake check in the hopes that it will fool the bank and then wire the difference to them. Once the bank realizes their error , which will happen very shortly, they will come back to you wanting the money and at that point you are just out of luck and there’s not very much you can do in terms of trying to recoup that loss.”
Ellison says his agency sees that scammers stay on top of things.
“They always adapt to new media,” says Ellison. “They used to use faxes; now they use email. Whatever we have the future, they will use that as well, so what you want to do is be prepared. And the way you do that is to know a certain set of rules. Do not wire something to people you do not know. If you receive a check and you have no reason to receive a check, it’s probably going to be fake, so throw it away.”