Disclaimer: We are not attorneys and don't pretend to be.

In our experience, the solutions offered in this section have proven to be effective; however, we always recommend that you consult with an attorney.

If you have doubts about Fraud Aid, do not hesitate to contact federal (FBI, Secret Service, RCMP) Scotland Yard, or local law enforcement to check us out.

 

Stay out of debt and stay out of jail:

The legal truth about work-at-home money, package, and check forwarding jobs

 

How to really verify a check

Your ID Theft Prevention To-Do List

What to do about threats from scammers

Money has been wired into your bank, credit union, or credit card account, you have withdrawn some or all of it, but have not sent or spent it

You are going to be alright! 

You are not going to be arrested.

No one is coming after you for anything.

Cease all correspondence with the scammers.  Do not open or answers their emails.  If you have caller ID, do not answer their calls.  If you do answer the phone, hang up as soon as you realize who is calling you.  If they persist, blow a whistle into the telephone.  If you are being threatened, please go here: http://www.fraudaid.com/threats.htm

If you have been corresponding with the scammers by email and/or have gone to a web site they told you is theirs, you are at high risk of Identity Theft even if you have bad credit.  Go here: www.fraudaid.com/id_theft.htm.

File a Scam Email Report with our Law Enforcement Support Division.  You will find step-by-step graphic instructions for your email service here: www.fraudaid.com/find_headers.htm.

MONEY ORDER WARNING! Counterfeiters are now inventing the names of money order companies.  DO NOT CASH any money order and DO NOT DEPOSIT any money order you receive from someone you do not know  or someone you met online without ordering your bank to send it for collection.

DO NOT WITHDRAW ANY FUNDS FROM YOUR ACCOUNT to spend or to send to anyone without asking your bank if they have been paid.  Even with a hold, your account is credited before your bank has been paid.   If the draft you deposited comes back because it was stolen, forged, or is a counterfeit you will owe your bank all the money plus return charges.  www.fraudaid.com/check_liability.htm

Money has been wired into your bank, credit union, or credit card account, you have withdrawn some or all of it, but have not sent or spent it

Banks & Credit unions:

Contact your bank branch immediately and ask for the Operations Officer.  If that officer is not available, ask for the Manager or ask for the number to the Fraud Department or Security Department. 

 

Western Union and MoneyGram were designed to send money to friends and family, not to send money to strangers.

NEVER WIRE MONEY TO A STRANGER!

 

Explain that the money that was wired into your account was the result of an Internet scam, and that it must be returned to the rightful owner.

State that you have all the money in hand that you have withdrawn and are returning it.

State that the account information is now in the hands of scammers and that:

(a) You want the illicit funds removed from your account and placed in the custody of the bank or credit union.

(b) Your account must be zeroed out and closed when you return the money.

When you return the money, it will have to be re-deposited into your current account.  At that time present your financial institution with written instructions that:

(a) You are a scam victim.

(b) You want the funds that were wired into your account removed from your account and placed in the financial institution's custody.

(c) The illicit funds are to be returned to the rightful owner.

(d) That your account has been compromised by scammers and you want your account No. _____________ to be zeroed out and closed immediately.

This provides you with a paper trail, meaning it is evidence that you took immediate, responsible action.

It may be necessary for you to open a no-activity account (no checks or debit card, no deposits or withdrawals allowed) or an escrow account and transfer the money into that account.

If you have to transfer the funds to a no-activity account, make very VERY sure your bank does not decide to use it as an overdraft payment source for your regular account.  That's one of the reasons we suggest an escrow account if your financial institution is unwilling to place the money in their own custody.

If you don't wish to open an escrow account or a no-activity account, then move your account to another bank but leave the stolen money at your current financial institution.  Do not move it from the financial institution under any circumstances.  The moment you do, you are engaging in money laundering and theft.

If you have automatic deposits contact all parties and change to paper checks for now.

If you are set up for Bill Pay (your bank has instructions to pay certain bills on a pre-determined schedule), contact your creditors, explain the situation, and pay them by money order for now.

In one or two days, check back to make certain the account was closed.  You want to make very, very sure that it does not have some small amount of money keeping it open.  Sometimes monthly bank fees or checking account interest will hit on the same day the account is closed.  This will keep the account open and active.

When you open your new account, use a different name.  Example: If your current account reads John Marion Doe with address and phone, open the new account to read J. Doe with no address and phone. 

There is no point in advertising your personal information, plus Identity Thieves will not be able to tell how you sign your name.

Credit Card Accounts

Contact your credit card company immediately and ask for the Fraud Department.

Explain that the money wired into your account was due to an Internet scam and that it does not belong to you. 

State that you are returning the amount you withdrew and that the amount of the wired deposit is to be returned to the rightful owner.

Sate that you want to be issued a new card number.

Even if your credit card company has trouble locating the rightful owner, they will still remove the credit from your account.

Make very VERY sure your credit card company understands that they cannot lower your debt by using the stolen money.

Check your account balance the following day to make sure the credit has been removed from your account.  If it hasn't, call again.  If a new card number has been issued, you should not be able to access your account until you receive your new card.

If that's the case, then call your credit card company to get a status report and to find out if the stolen money has been removed from your account.

Pay Pal: See Option 2, Pay Pal

If your circumstances do not fit the above solution and you have checked the MENU for solutions and have not found what you need, please write to so we can review your problem and offer alternate solutions or intervention.

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