For Immediate Release
Scam Victims from across the country team up to raise awareness
ScamVictimsUnited.com, a non-profit website that offers support and resources for victims of scams, is teaming up with scam victims in Texas for a fundraiser and awareness event. The event will be held on Saturday June 14th, 2008 (7am - 5pm) at Bergfeld Park in Tyler, Texas.
Shawn and Jeff Mosch, of Bloomington, MN, began ScamVictimsUnited.com after they became victims of a Counterfeit Cashier's Check Scam in 2002. "It was so frustrating.â€ says Shawn Mosch, "We would call to report the scam, and we would be told to call another place, and there was not any good information or assistance out there." This motivated the Mosch's to start their site, so that they could not only share their story but offer a bit of education to others so that the same thing would not happen to them. What started out as a way to share their story and try to help others has grown in volumes over the years. In 2007, Shawn Mosch was even asked to speak at the National Center for Victims Of Crimes annual conference in Washington D.C.
Not only does ScamVictimsUnited.com offer information and education to people about scam, the message board that acts as a support group for victims of all types of scam . . . counterfeit check scam, roommate scams, romance scams and work at home/secret shopper scam, just to name a few. This provides for a safe environment in which they can share their stories with other who have been through the same experience without worry of blame or judgment. This is where Shawn met Kitty Robinson of Bullard, Texas.
Kitty was looking to make some extra money so she went online and answered an ad for a Secret Shopper. It seemed like a perfect job . . . you could set your own hours, the company sends you money to shop with, and once you are done shopping you simply fill our a form telling the company about the service you received. Kitty's first assignment was to complete four money order transfers totaling more than nine thousand dollars. The "company" she thought she was working for provided her the money that she would be wiring, in the form of a cashier's check. All she had to do was deposit the checks, wait for them to clear, wire the money back to her contact at the "company" she was working for, and fill out the paperwork to critic the money wiring services at the different locations she went to. Kitty did not want to wire the money until she knew that the checks were good, so she asked her bank about them and they assured her that they were good. But then, after the money had been wired off and Kitty was waiting for her next Secret Shopper assignment, she found out that the checks were counterfeit and her bank was holding her liable for the money. The bank even went as far as to deduct the amount of the checks from Kitty's account, leaving her overdrawn and with no money to live on.
The reason that these scams work is because the scammers know that the banks will tell you that a Cashier's Check has "cleared" in 24 hours, but "The check has cleared" does not mean the money in your account belongs to you. It only means that the clearing house has not sent the draft back for non-sufficient funds, closed account, or flag instructions on the account. It does not mean the draft was written by the account holder. Another phrase the bank will use is that the â€œfunds are availableâ€, which does not mean the money in your account belongs to you, even if a hold has been taken off the draft. The only time the money in your account really belongs to you is when the check or money order has been HONORED, meaning your bank has been credited (paid) by the account holder bank. The general public is not aware that a cashierâ€™s check takes as long as a personal check does to go through the entire check verification process. The common thought that a cashierâ€™s check is as good as cash in your hand is no longer true.
Please join us at Bergfeld Park to raise awareness about these scams, the warning signs, and the misleading bank terminology. We also hope to collect cash donations to assist Kitty Robinson in her financial recovery, and additional funds will support ScamVictimsUnited.com so that they can continue to provide tools, resources and support to scam victims.
1510 South College Ave
Co-Founder of http://ScamVictimsUnited.com
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