The Better Business Bureau says they have seen a spike in scams that ask for people to use a MoneyPak, which is a reloadable debit card. They are normally used to make same-day payments or add money to prepaid cards or PayPal accounts.
Officials think MoneyPak scams could be the new wire transfer scam.
“cammers are moving away from seeking payments via wire transfer and instead asking consumers to give them money via MoneyPaks,” said Dana Badgerow, president and CEO of the BBB. “We feel this is likely due to the fact this form of payment is quite convenient – for both consumers and scammers – and untraceable. "
The BBB says any website requesting payment via a MoneyPak is likely a scam.
Some of the reports filed with the BBB and the Minnesota Department of Public Safety include the following:
-People were asked to pay advance fees on bogus loans with MoneyPaks.
-People were told they had won cash prizes of hundreds of thousands of dollars, but would first have to provide payment via MoneyPaks to claim their winnings.
-People purchased heavily discounted home exercise equipment they found advertised on a fraudulent website (www.directhomefitness.com), but after paying hundreds of dollars for it with a MoneyPak discovered the merchandise was nonexistent