Beware of the “cheque washing” scam on your checking account
TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) – You wash your hair, you wash your clothes, but did you know washing a check is one thing?
It’s – and it’s no joke because it almost cost a Toledo woman thousands of dollars.
People caught up in it are doing the right thing. You get a bill for your mortgage, write a check to pay it, send it off, and you should be done. But that’s not what happened because a thief was somewhere in the middle.
It’s not the mortgage check that Flora Patten wrote in August and hand-delivered to the US Post Office on Manhattan Boulevard. But it’s the check cashed in his bank account a few days later. She found out while trying to pay another bill.
“My account says empty, zero. My checking account. I’m like OK, I have money. So somewhere they made a mistake,” Patton said.
She looked at her check register and compared the numbers. Someone got their hands on the real check and washed it. They took Flora’s information from the check and gave it to someone else for $6,800. She even called her credit union to check.
“She knew right away that it wasn’t my hand that was writing. Your check has been washed. I said ‘washed, what is it?’ I’ve never heard of it,” Patton said.
Fortunately, the fraud protections allowed her to get the money back, but she had to take other steps to pay the mortgage. Patton did nothing wrong, which might be the scariest part of all.
“Nothing surprises me anymore because there is so much going on in the world. People are finding a way to be a part of everything,” Patton said.
Can you prevent this sort of thing? Not really. Your best bet is to attack him if and when that happens. This may mean checking your bank account almost daily to spot a problem before it gets worse.
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