Gas Card Scam Turns Victim into Con Artist - WBAY

Target 2 Consumer Alert

Gas Card Scam Turns Victim into Con Artist


With gas prices soaring, it seems most people are looking to find a way to save at the pump.

But a warning: con artists are hoping to hook people with a deal that's just too good to be true, one that turns victims into scammers themselves.

Postal inspectors say an online ad promises a chance to win a $500 gas card by paying $79.95, but they also ask you to become part of the scheme.

"You would send the $79.95 to the suspect and they would send you paperwork back on how to conduct your own scam," said Laura Carter, U.S. Postal Inspector.

Victims never get a $500 gas gift card. Instead, they got a blueprint on how to con more people out of money.

"They would tell you how to place an ad in a newspaper or online advertising," said Carter. "'This $500 gift card for $79.95.'" Thereby, you would get the $79.95 from these victims, so this could perpetuate into additional victims."

Inspectors say they're seeing more of these simple schemes.

"During tough economic times, it's difficult for people to get to their own job, let alone pay for the gas to get there," Carter said. "So a $79.95 dollar payment for a $500 gift card sounds really great to people."

If you're looking for any bargains or deals, you have to review them.

One way is to contact the Better Business Bureau and see if they've had any complaints about the company offering the deal.

Also, do a gut check.  If there is something that just doesn't seem right about the company or offer, walk away and don't get involved.

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