Wire Fraud – Wire Scam

Wire fraud is defined as attempting to defraud using electronic means, such as a computer or telephone. What must be proved is that the person knowingly and willfully devised or intended to devise a scheme to defraud. Since the advent of the internet, there are literally thousands of crimes that fall under the definition of wire fraud. Here we’re going to take a look at some of the more common forms of wire fraud, why they occur, and how you can protect yourself.

Wire Fraud

Wire Fraud In Banking

While security measures have certainly increased over the years, banks still fall victim to wire fraud, costing them millions of dollars or more every year. Since banks are constantly wiring extremely large sums of money back and forth between accounts, it may take them awhile to notice when a large sum of money goes missing. This type of fraud is usually perpetrated by insiders who forge documents a wire money to foreign accounts. Other common ways this can occur is via the internet, through fraudulent activity such as stolen identities, stolen credit card numbers, and hacked internet banking accounts.

Wire Fraud On The Internet

The internet is a haven for con artists. A great example of wire fraud on the internet is commonly known as the “Nigerian”, or the “419 scam”. There are many other forms of wire fraud that may occur on the internet. A few common ones are:

  • Email Phishing: The practice of sending out fake emails that look legitimate, in order to steal information such as passwords, credit card numbers, or personal information.
  • Identity Theft: Usually perpetrated by people who set up legitimate looking websites designed to trick users into submitting personal information, similar to a loan or insurance application.. Other methods may include hacking databases containing business information, or accessing a personal hard drive illegally to steal personal information.
  • Fraudulent Business Sales: This is a common scam targeting webmasters and potential investors. When valuing an internet business, revenue, traffic, and the future potential value of the website are used to estimate the value. By faking revenue and traffic proof, a con artist can inflate perceived value of the website, sometimes scamming victims out of thousands of dollars.

Wire Fraud On The Phone

Wire fraud commonly occurs over the telephone as well. A con artist will call your house, and try to talk you out of personal information. Common scams involve criminals posing as salesmen, loan officers, and other business professionals in order to collect personal information such as credit card numbers or social security numbers.

Protecting Yourself

Wire fraud is a very real threat in the world today. By using a little bit of common sense, you can avoid becoming a victim yourself. Don’t give out personal information over the telephone to unsolicited callers without doing an extensive check on their background. Be careful what kind of websites you use to conduct financial transactions. There are many legitimate websites where doing credit card transactions, or even loan applications is extremely secure. Be wary of any unknown websites. Bottom line, don’t give out your personal information to strangers. With just a little bit of common sense you can avoid becoming a victim of wire fraud yourself.

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12 thoughts on “Wire Fraud – Wire Scam”


  2. I too would like to know an answer to Mary’s question as I have been taken for $850.00 by a lending company that has now mysteriously closed. The name of the group is Cedarview Lending in Massachusetts. BEWARE……

  3. Yes, I have the answer. Report that immediately to the lending institution or bank that the funds were transferred by. For example, if you gave money via check/debit card, contact your bank. They will generally give you the money back after a small investigation into the fraud. You have to report it quickly so they can reverse the charges.

    If you gave the money via credit card, contact the credit card company and notify them of the fraud. They can sometimes reverse the charge.

  4. I forgot to mention, regardless of your success getting your money back, you should report fraud to law enforcement for investigation. You can contact the FBI if local law enforcement doesn’t seem like they are going to pursue the issue. Good Luck.

    Remember …. fraud hurts every law abiding and tax paying citizen.

  5. I was scammed out of $631.00 by a company saying I needed to send them a security deposit for a personal loan. silver creek equity group from NJ. After I sent it they told me I had to send in another $631 I refused and asked for a refund. Now the phone number and website don’t work what can I do?

  6. My mom wanted to sell a timeshare but she ended up being scammed out of 1500$ via money wire to TD bank. She called the bank but they said that they knew the account was fraudulent so there was a chance that she could get her money back since no one had touched the account yet. She called back a few days later and they said that there was now no money in the account and they won’t admit to ever having said that there was a chance that she could get her money back to begin with. Who can she contact to have this checked out? It seems like not only did my mom get scammed but the banks are NOT helpful at all.

  7. I have a man who wants to buy 4 coins I have, total cost $170.00, and he wants to send me a certified check for $1500.00 and have me take out my money and wire, via Western Union, the remainder to a shipping outfit who will pick up his coins for him. He is offering me another $50 to do it this way, “for your inconveince.” I could mail the coins to him for less than $5.00, or overnight via Fed Ex if he is in a hurry, for $25.

    Anybody see anything fishy about this, and where would I stand legally if I did it this way.

  8. i got scammed out of 3362.00. i was looking for a nanny job when the woman told me the job had been filled and told me that a man needed someone to work for him part time. he sent me checks by ups 995.00 i was to deposit them but my bank had to let them clear over night and when they did i was to cash them deduct 10% and send the rest western union to were ever he told me to send it to. come to find out 2 weekd later all of the checks bounced now i owe my bank 3362.00. i talked to an investogater and filled a police reprt but now my bank wants to take me to cort over it if i dont pay it back within 60 days?? like i have the 3000 dollars in my hands right now?? so now i have to talk to a legal aid about this or deal and or try to get a loan to pay the bank off if i even have to.

  9. I was scammed out of $80,000 from BANK OF THE ATLANTIC supposedly located
    in Montreal Canada. They promised a huge return on my investment but when
    I asked them to wire me my money, they claim it would take 6-8 weeks.
    This was more than 11 weeks ago, and since then, there has been no answer.
    A friend of mine who introduced me to BANK OF THE ATLANTIC was also frauded
    out of $150,000 and another person I know about $100,000.
    BEWARE, they are BAD and DANGEROUS. They scam on innocent people, my
    friend did business with a Japanese department there so she really thought
    she could trust Bank of the Atlantic but we were so wrong!! Now we are in the
    process of contacting the FBI.

  10. I was just scammed out of 520.00 I know we hear all the time, don’t wire funds to somewhere to received funds, and that if it sounds too good to be true it is. They hit me when i was desperate for money so I wouldn’t be evicted. I had applied for cash/payday loans on line, and received a phone call from this “california” based company, the person spoke with a thick India accent I was told to wire 112 dollars and I would have a loan of 1500 approved. I would then just need to make the monthly payments of 115 to pay it back over 10 payments. I talked to my husband and he researched online to see if any one had posted anything about the company and nothing came up, then he googled the phone number and it came back as valid phone number 213-457-3535 from California. I proceeded to complete what they asked for, I sent the money and was on the phone the whole time an hour later after sending funds, I was advised that I needed to send 400, she spent a half an hour advising me that this would be for insurance for company just in case, and then I would receive within 5 minutes the amount of 2000.00 which would be the total 500 returned to me. She had me fill out the wire receive form with a number and confirmed it not once but after I sent the 4000, she confirmed this wire form again. I waited for over 45 minutes before someone else came in and said I needed to send 300 for taxes and then they would wire 2300 to me. This blew me up. I then learned over a series of the next hour while I fought with this guy over my not sending anything else that they had no intention of wiring the money to me that it would be deposited into my account, and that loan documents which I had asked for prior to sending money would be hand delivered to me for signature. I told them I wanted my 500 wired back to me and they told me they could return all but 300 because that was the penalty for cancelling the loan. I told them they have no loan so they don’t need insurance and I want the 400 wired to me immediately and they advised i would get 200 within 10 days for cancelling. Whatever you do go with your 1st thought no matter how desperate you are go to your family no matter how shameful it is, go to your friends or anyone you know to help out don’t ever rely on pay day loans, don’t ever wire any money to anyone with out a signed documents confirming, I hate that hindsight is so 20/20 and now, tomorrow I will be evicted without a home, but yes wiser.

  11. I met a guy and we have been chatting now 4 motnhs he was on his way from england to stay with me here in Oklahoma. He had been missing I just figured he was a liar. Well I got an email from a man saying he found my friend on the side of the highway in Canada and took him to a private clinic for treatment. This man says gave me a Docotrs name of Ashton Nelson and the gentleman who supposedly found my friend said his name his Steven Cox. they are holding my friend hostage for 3500 for payment of care. I dont have the money and my friend says to have his friend wire me the money and then wire to this doctor. I just honestly want to call the toronto police but I was told if I did this they will kill him. I am not sure what to do. My cousin says it is a scam

  12. I have a question that I cannot find an answer to. I have real estate lender who said that I have been approved for a loan and in order to receive the loan, I need to send them a fee of $9000. Because I do not have that kind of money, they said that they will wire the $9000 to me and then I am to wire that money to the company who is providing the loan to me who is a private lender.
    Please tell me how this is a scam since I am getting money wired to me and then have to wire that money to someone else.


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