Fraud Reporting should be made easy.

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As good citizens, we have to report fraud to prevent other people from being taken. Today, I am frustrated that I could not report an incident. First, I called the FBI (202) 278-2000 – as usual, layers of messages come thru, but the tone of the 2nd message gives the impression of a dead end. I forgot to turn the phone off, and a voice comes on with more messages. Finally, I got hold of a guy who says to go to ic3.gov – what a hassle? I could not report it even on that website. No wonder people don’t want to report bad incidents because of this hassle. But I am not

HERE IS THE STORY

I got a call if I can do a shopping survey for $350 compensation. I am well versed in shopping, particularly in the housing market, to see if there is discrimination. It was my cup of tea, and I agreed. I received a check for $1750 with instructions to go to Best Buy, Walmart, and another store and buy $1400 Gift Cards, and report back to them with the numbers and keep the $350. 

They started calling and texting me if I have begun shopping. I responded that until the check clears through my bank, I will not buy the Gift Cards. They kept calling, and four days later, my bank returned the check. It happened once more as they had apologized for the mistake. That check did not clear either. I got the 3rd check, and instead of depositing, I called the bank if the cheque would clear, the banker said no, she asked me to send a copy of the check, and I did. 

Then I called the FBI in vain to report this. No wonder people are reluctant to report the cases. I will not give up. 

The fraud: If I had bought the Gift Cards – they would have cashed $1400.00, and if they did this to 100 people in a month, that would be $140,000 – I am sure several people are taken for this. This should be reported to prevent other people from being taken.

My actions: Go to my congresswoman and ask to take this up and possibly correct these:

  1. Fix the FBI outgoing messages 
  2. reporting should be made easy
  3. Cashing gift cards must be traceable. 

Mike Ghouse

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