KINGSTON – Fake check scams are clever ploys designed to steal your money. You can avoid becoming a victim by recognizing how the scam works and understanding your responsibility for the checks that you deposit in your account.
There are many variations of the fake check scam, according to the Ulster County District Attorney’s Division of Consumer Affairs. It could start with someone offering to buy something you advertised, pay you to do work at home, give you an “advance” on a sweepstakes you’ve supposedly won, or pay the first installment on the millions that you’ll receive for agreeing to have money in a foreign country transferred to your bank account for safekeeping.
Consumer Affairs advises:
- The checks are fake but they look real (the companies whose names appear may be real, but the checks have been dummied up without their knowledge);
- It can take weeks for the forgery to be discovered and the check to bounce. You are responsible for the checks you deposit;
- There is no legitimate reason for someone who is giving you money to ask you to wire money back (this is the check overpayment scam).
Ulster Consumer Affairs can be reached at 845-340-3260.