Fake Checks & Wire Transfer Scams, FakeChecks.org fights back!

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A year or two ago I saw an ad for a financial based work at home opportunity that sounded very promising. The opportunity was free and listed specific requirements and had a very professional looking website. All these are usually signs of a valid work at home job. The "job" was to accept checks on behalf of international clients who for some reason weren't able to cash these checks in their location. In return I would be provided a portion of the check like a check cashing fee. At first glance this just didn't seem to make sense to me.

But I guess because I was so desperate to find a work at home opportunity I decided to visit their website for more details.  I was very impressed on how professional looking the website was and they even had documentation showing that they were part of some consumer protection agency and some other official agencies. So as a result of this I decided to bite. They asked me to fill out some paperwork on their website and then I had to fax my driver's license to the company for verification purposes.

This all sounded very legitimate to me at this point. But still something nagged me about it all. So I sent an email letting these guys know that I run a very big work at home website and that if this was legitimate I would be happy to share the information with others. I think that may have been my saving grace. After I faxed over my information and sent my email. I never heard back from the company. That lead me to believe something must be wrong.

But a few weeks passed and the experience was forgotten. I come home one day and there was a message from my local police department asking me to come in. Needless to say I was terrified.
I'm a black male so I have a natural distrust of police because of my own experiences as a youth of being unfairly targeted and searched on numerous occasions. But I knew I didn't do anything wrong so I called the detective back and he asked if I would come to the precinct. So despite my innocence I was still very nervous so I decided to bring my wife to calm my nerves.

The detective was very friendly and nice. He asked if I ever heard of said company (I don't remember the name of it because of my "mad cow" affliction. lol) And I said yes, I do. I explained that I found them online and had applied to work from them but never heard back from them when I mentioned I ran a major work at home website. The detective explained to me that they and several law enforcement agencies all across the country had been investigating this company and had raided their offices recently. Apparently the opportunity was a big scam and they must have received a lot of complaints about this fraud opportunity which lead to this massive investigation. I asked the detective how he knew to contact me. He said they had found my faxed driver's license and many others.  So they were all contacting the various victims to piece together any other missing information or people that may have been part of the scam. Needless to say I was very happy that they told me about this.

Fortunately for me I never received any checks to cash for this company so I wasn't in any trouble with the cops or my bank.  But it was a great learning experience for me. If I followed the steps listed in my scam section, I probably would've avoided this whole ordeal. Fortunately for me I lost nothing. But thousands aren't as fortunate. Many end up being in serious trouble with their banks where they have to pay back large amounts of money and some have also had their identity stolen. I was very lucky to say the least.

Fake checks and wire scams must be a huge problem because apparently some people have taken noticed and created the website FakeChecks.org. I came across this scam prevention website on some commercials here in New York. They really cover how this scam works, what you can do and also provide some other insight on other scams. So please be sure to check out FakeChecks.org

They have some great content and videos. You can actually see some of the commercials there. Watching the commercials really brings home how the internet can distort common sense real world judgment.

FakeChecks.org is a must in your scam prevention tactics.

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Debra St. Louis - February 2, 2015 Reply

As I read some of the comments it is so sad to see how we can’t trust most job and if a job is legit you have to wonder.. I say this last week I got 2 calls from 2 different people offering me jobs that I had signed up for amazon.com first thing that assured me this was a scam I nevered signed up with Amazon, so I listened and played the game in the end which both of them said it would be $99.00 the first lady I told is I need a job that means I don’t have money so why should I pay you for a job, she hung up quick.. The second time when this one mentioned $99.00 I made sure she feel the slam of my phone in her face.. haven’t heard from any one again, but I get the impression some one will try again.. Yes amazon is hiring but you go to their site and no where will you see a fee to work for them.. A lot of time these scammers make good companies look bad for using their name, but if you signed up and not sure call them first.

I also like when got laid of my job after 29 years was desperate for a job got scammed with one of those check for 1,436.00 did the western union trick.. Thank God the other 950.00 they wanted a western union on my bank said I had exceeded my limit for that day.. They tried to get me to go to the bank and withdraw I told them no it was raining and the bank was far..

As Eddy has advised me I gave a summary on this before we must not feel afraid to accept jobs but make sure as I am saying also do your own FBI investigation.. It may take some time but it is worth it in the long run.. They post on Indeed.com, Glassdoor.com, snagajob and even Career builder which career builder has caught a few!!
In this day and time we just have to be careful.

    Eddy Salomon - February 2, 2015 Reply

    Thanks for sharing Debra,

    When it comes to the work at home industry there are definitely far more scams than there are legitimate opportunities which was why this site was born. And job seekers have to do their research using various resources like my scam video and other ways.

    It’s better to air on the side of caution. But it must be done without being totally jade or paralyzed by fear of trying anything. My experience with searching for work at home jobs is probably what steered me into starting my own online business instead. I didn’t like dealing with all the scams, I didn’t like the rejection of employers or hoping and waiting for them to contact me. And I definitely didn’t like the idea of being paid less than what I thought I was worth and having my hours dictated to me. So I dodged that bullet.

    Everyone has to find their own path when it comes to making money online. But a work at home job definitely wasn’t the right path for me because of nonsense like you described and the others I mentioned.

Annette Rutledge - January 19, 2015 Reply

Thank you for the information. It’s go to know there are people like you out there striving to help us protect ourselves as much as we can. If know one has said it to you lately, THANK YOU so much I do appreciate your help. Please keep up the good work!!!

    Eddy Salomon - January 19, 2015 Reply

    You’re very welcome Annette! I really appreciate the thank you and kind words. It’s nice to see that there are still people out there that know how to say Thank you. 😉

    Debra St Louis - February 14, 2015 Reply

    Thank you Annette I am not ashamed if anything I feel great to share so that others will be aware.. No one has money to give to the cyber crooks.. I am not afraid to accept jobs online in fact I do 2 telephone jobs helping some others with their business they never asked me for anything and I have been paid by them I have my money sent to Paypal to be protected.. If they don’t have Paypal I have no shame in asking them can they get it..
    am even to the point of going down my checklist to see where they actually coming from..
    Learned my lesson.. If anyone ask me to join their business or start my own I ask them is their a fee up front if they say yes I say no thanks.. Let’s start the business and when I see me making money I will know it is legit and then I will only pay maybe a one time fee not a monthly fee. Why monthly when it is now my business and I have to recruit to build it..

    Eddy Salomon - February 14, 2015 Reply

    Hey Debra,

    Thanks for chiming in. But let’s not confuse a job vs a business because there is a big difference. With a job you shouldn’t have to cough up any money upfront.

    However with a business you will probably have to invest in your business and thus self. This could be a one time fee, monthly fee or combination of both. Any successful business owner will tell you that they had to invest money in their business way before they ever saw their first dime. You spend many unpaid hours before your fruits of labor pay off. And obviously not many people aren’t built for that. Because they have immediate bills they may need to pay or they just lack the delayed gratification and patience necessary to see a business through.

    And that’s fine. Not everyone was meant to be a business owner and why so many people are employees. So I just wanted to clarify that. Obviously you were meant to be an employee and that’s great. Thanks for chiming in as always.

Brad Eastes - March 13, 2014 Reply

Hello Eddy, I am currently working for a company named Mail Plus llc. They have a website under this name and everything seemed to be ligit, They performed background checks, lengthy application and contract. Very detailed and personal communication at first. Now I have not yet received a check deposit, they do have bank info that was done on a direct deposit form. They claim to offer 2 week paid vac. pd sick days, health ins. and it was a lengthy process to get started with them.I had other people check them out and even a friend who works for fed ex, they all seem to think it is legit. this week i have experienced server crash messages from website and no activity from them on my administration page which they set up for me to log into before i started. I am a local Pastor and devoted Man of God and in no way would I ever get involved with something remotely questionable, let alone criminal. All of my shipments and tracking is verified thru USPS and I have saved all receipts as well as physical and online files as well as admin conversations per company website. I am due to receive my first deposit pay on Mar. 23. Do you have info or experience with this co. and would they literally go to all this trouble to cheat someone. The website is all about e-commerce and shows legitimate llc. with operations since 1996. I have had no contact since i have asked some direct questions and my admin page has no activity this week at all. No return of my messages or calls. Help!!! They recruited from Snagajob and all the opportunities i have received from them were reputable.

    Eddy Salomon - March 14, 2014 Reply

    Hi, You didn’t provide details on what this company allegedly hired you to do. I’m gathering they were sending packages to you that you were suppose to reship elsewhere? If that’s the case, this a big scam and described in great detail here: http://www.workathomenoscams.com/2008/10/07/package-forwarding-reshipping-job-or-scam/ and what you need to do.

    Many time these scam artist will go through a very elaborate process to make you feel it’s legit. But it’s a scam. They’ll have nice websites, use other real company’s names, etc. But once you hear the job involves shipping packages you know it’s a scam.

    Unfortunately it sounds like you fell for one. I would get some identity protection service asap. Because they have probably stolen your identity as well and selling it on the black market. So at least with some identity protection you’ll be notified of any credit being opened in your name.

    Salim Tareq - March 14, 2015 Reply

    Dear,
    Its a scam. They are fraud. I have the same experience like you. I did the same job like you but I realized before I loose anything.
    Anyway, Just forget about this. Keep all the records and invoices just as a record in case if you face any problem. Never involve with this kind of job in future.

Shonta - April 29, 2013 Reply

Hi Eddy, I am currently working for a company called Intforwarding shipping and receiving merchandise. I have been very careful to keep receipts and copy everything that crosses my hands to cover myself should something go wrong. I search online everyday to see if this company is part of a scam, but I have yet to find anything; however, I’m constantly worried about it everyday. I have made it known to the company that I do not want to be involved in any scams or illegal activity and they called me to ensure I wasn’t being scammed. I haven’t given any information about my bank account and in fact they have sent me money Western Union to ship packages, but I still want to be careful. Any advice or information about Intforwarding that can put my mind at ease?

    Eddy Salomon - May 26, 2013 Reply

    As I’ve said many times in this article in the comments. If what you’re doing sounds like we’ve described above, it’s a scam and you should stop. There isn’t much more to it.

Rhonda - June 2, 2012 Reply

I answered an ad for a marketing at home job with Global Marketing Alliances based out of UK with many US workers. I gave them a resume and contact information. I got hired and was told I would be making $725 every 2 wks plus 8% of all assignments completed. Their website and All documents appeared to be legit even the tax and direct deposit form for my pay.
I have completed work for Global Marketing Alliances through a woman named Michelle Longley in HR acting as a hiring manager. I do not know what happened to her…All of a sudden she stopped emailing me, giving me assignments and calling. I have made numerous attempts to contact her but her contact information is all disconnected and the emails are bounced back. I have sent numerous messages on the HR portal but they never got answered. Now I am unable to log into the HR portal and my registration is deleted.
Michelle signed me up with GMA and I received a phone call from headquarters then a contract was sent to me stating compensation amounts and working conditions.
Money in amounts of 4-9K were wired into my bank account. These monies were verified by my bank and I was cleared to withdraw. My assignments included me wiring monies to clients in Kiev which I did. I was told that the wired money were credits from book royalties and overpayments. I was then told that my compensation would be mailed. I waited for 3 weeks then she told me that there was a mail problem so my pay will be wired into my bank account. To this day, I have not received anything. It has been over a month.
I wanted to to continue my working relationship with Global Marketing but have no other contacts. Part of me feels like I have been used. I have been very honest and am willing to work. I have been trusted with very large amounts of money. I completed each task honestly and never kept any money even after I was promised compensation. I would like to know where do I go from here? I have tried to contact headquarters via phone and email but there has been no response. My bank is not giving me trouble but I think since this woman has disappeared and I have never received any pay for completing the tasks that something is up and now im more concerned about how legit this really was. Has anyone heard of this? Any advice?

Eddy Salomon - May 14, 2012 Reply

Hi Siroda,
Thanks for sharing the great advice! It’s nice to hear from someone in the banking industry that can shed further light on to this annoying scam.

Thanks again!

Siroda - May 14, 2012 Reply

I worked for 5 years as a banker/teller at one of the largest banks in the U.S. and I can’t believe how many people fall for this scam.  If it’s not under the guise of a WAH opportunity, it was from some lottery scam.  The “lottery winnings” (usually from Canada) scam always irritated me the most because most of the customers would admit they never had played the lottery to begin with!  Let alone in Cananda.  Same goes for Reader’s Digest scams.  Always someone offering to send a check so that you can cash it and send the money back.  

For people asking what they should do with a check they have received, but not cashed, just shred it.  You won’t get in trouble just for having the check, and that’s all I would do when people brought the checks to me.  If you’re worried about what information you’ve sent to the “company,” you may want to contact your local police department.  If you’ve already deposited and/or cashed the check, but haven’t spent or sent the money, take the money back to your bank and let them know that you’ve been scammed.  Hopefully, they’ll be understanding and at the very least only charge you for the returned check.  Though it may be hard to work through the fact that such a large dollar amount came back against your account, you’re in a better position if you aren’t in the hole (negative in your account).  If you’ve negotiated the check and have already spent or sent the money, let your bank know IMMEDIATELY!  But to be honest, there may not be a whole lot they can do.  At the end of the day, the bank doesn’t want to be out money and they may hold it against you since when you endorse the back of any check, you are essentially taking responsibility for the collection of it.

I definitely recommend keeping any type of paperwork or communication that comes with the check.  When customers brought the letters that came with their “winnings” or whatever, I almost always knew that it was a scam.  I hated being the bearer of bad news but I’ll never forget the girl who’s mother fell victim to the scam, gave the daughter the check to cash and now it’s on record that the daughter owes the bank in excess of $3k.  Don’t let that person be you!  And even though banks can put extended holds on checks, that may not always catch it.  I had a check on hold for 5 business days, the customer came in for the money and on the 6th business day, the check came back bad!  Just be careful folks, this article is good information!

Eddy Salomon - April 22, 2012 Reply

You better contact your bank ASAP!

Faithmaster - April 21, 2012 Reply

i have fallen for the scam today i received a cashiers check for 9000 and i cashed it if it comes back no good will i have to pay it back im so scared

Eddy Salomon - April 13, 2012 Reply

Just contact your bank and/or destroy the checks. As long as you didn’t cash them or wire money, you’re fine.

Bonnie Peters - April 13, 2012 Reply

I would like to say that I believe I have fallen for this scam I recieved the first check that I was suppose to cash and wire money to 2 diffrent people in China 3,500 dollars to be exact I have not done anyhting with this cashiers check for 7,700 dollars Please help what do I do with this check I don’t want to be in any trouble.

Karen Sawyer - April 3, 2012 Reply

Thanks for letting me know ya’ll. Over the past few days after thinking about it all and looking into them more nothing to be found on them except for from Feb of this year on I decided to contact them and tell them no thanks. The people who contacted me was a lady named Gayle Pittman, as well as a lady by the name or alleged name of Augusta Kirkland and the company was PalMana Estates, they claimed they had a Customer Service Job paying at $17.00 an hour. Really? I’ve done CS work for over 23+ years I’ve never been lucky enough to find a CS job that pays that good, especially working from home. Didn’t make sense, they said i’d be doing more involved work with them for International trade with Europe and Asia No thank you. They wanted me to open an account with Wells Fargo or some other one and any of my pay and bonuses etc would be going into that account. They said my bank a Credit Union wouldn’t work with them Praise God, but I’m just glad it’s all done with and you may wanna get the name of this company out there Eddy. Thanks again ya’ll, you’re all great.

    Eddy Salomon - April 4, 2012 Reply

    Karen, Thank goodness you used your common sense. When more folks do that it will be a lot harder for these con artists to thrive. Thanks for sharing the information. You probably just helped someone else avoid this assuming they think to do their research!

deja777 - April 2, 2012 Reply

@0ef756cd61d979e1d9600f9b554fc705:disqus  The bank I belong to is doing an investigation on Palmana Estate Limited because I just got a message from them saying they deposit some money into my account. I felt that I had to let the bank know whats going on and what the job required me to do. So the bank will be looking into this company to find out if it is a scam or not.

Karen Sawyer - March 28, 2012 Reply

Do you know if this company is a scam or not? They did ask me if I’d be willing to open an account and transfer money, but my son in law said it seems they came out of nowhere and they “hired” me but I’m starting to get nervous and would like to find out before I start training.

It’s called PalMana Estates
http://www.palmanaest.com/ 

Thank you

    Eddy Salomon - March 28, 2012 Reply

    Did you read the article above? Anything involving cashing or wiring money from strangers as part of a job is to be avoided. It doesn’t matter what the name of the company is.

Feelingrebelde - March 15, 2012 Reply

hi i rrecived a check 3 days ago i send it back i dint want it is that bad to send it back

Justinmitzlaff - August 27, 2011 Reply

Like many people here I answered a craigslist add, thinking it was going to be doing data reporting.  I received an e-mail from a James Gibson, saying a huge check is in on its way.  I am to put it into my account, take so much out for personal expenses, then transfer the rest to some address in Turkey.

I have the check and I know it’s a scam.  I am just unsure what to do with the check.  Do I just throw it away?  Or do I go and talk to someone at the bank?

    natalie taylor - October 16, 2011 Reply

     Totally turn them in!!!! Don’t end up in Jail over a couple grand

Eddy Salomon - July 23, 2011 Reply

Always follow your instincts when it comes to this industry. It will protect you from harm as it did in this situation.

foxyluv23 - July 22, 2011 Reply

ive had something similar like that happen to me, i just didnt cash the check. they wanted me to send the money over seas, and im like thats a no go. i wanted so badly to cash that money, but m glad i didnt

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