Translate Our Site

Money Mule Scams

Information about Money Mule Scams.

How It Works

Someone might offer you a job. Or say you’ve won a sweepstakes. Or start an online relationship with you. Whatever the story, next they want to send you money – and then ask you to send it on to someone else. They often say to wire the money or use gift cards.

But that money is stolen. And there never was a job, a prize, or a relationship – only a scam. That scammer was trying to get you to be what some people call a “money mule.”

If you deposit a scammer’s check, it might clear. But later, when the bank finds out it’s a fake check, you’ll have to repay the bank. And if you help a scammer move stolen money – even if you didn’t know it was stolen – you could get into legal trouble.

How to Prevent It

Keep your money to yourself. Never agree to move money for someone who contacts you, even if they promise a relationship, job, or prize. You could lose money and get in legal trouble.

If you lost money you should act immediately:

  • Call the gift card or debit card company immediately. The contact number is on the back of the card. If reported immediately, you may be able to stop the transfer of funds, otherwise it may not be possible to stop the funds from being withdrawn. It is also important to alert the card company of fraud.
  • If you sent cash, report it immediately to the postal service or whatever company you used. If you act quickly you may be able to stop delivery by giving the tracking number to the delivery company.
  • If you wired the money, contact the wire service company and report the fraud.
  • If you provided your bank account information or sent a check, contact your financial institution and place a stop payment on the check and alert them of the fraud.
  • If you gave personal information to the scammer you may be subject to identity theft. Learn what to do.
  • Report the scam to the Attorney General’s Office Toll Free 1-844-255-9210
  • Report scams to the Federal Trade Commission: Report Now