A wire transfer is an electronic transfer of funds from one bank or credit union to another done electronically across a network of institutions around the world. A wire transfer is an immediate form of payment. Like cash, once it leaves your hand or account, it cannot be reversed. Scammers try to use this key fact to separate you from your cash. Once a scammer has obtained the funds you wired (Perhaps in exchange for a cheque, or some other false pretense) the wire transfer cannot be reversed. For that reason, it’s essential to take steps to reduce your risk of fraud by knowing best practices for wire transfers:
- Do not send funds to an individual or business you don’t know personally.
- Be wary of schemes claiming your payment will allegedly cover a loved one’s expenses, lottery winning fees, and other scenarios.
- Situations where you’re requested to deposit a cheque and send a portion back under the pretense that the extra money is commission or overpayment are often fraudulent. If the cheque bounces, you may be responsible for the amount.
- Check the information you include on a wire transfer. One typo could send the money to the wrong person or business.
- Beware of people asking you to receive funds for them and then transferring those funds to others. They could be using you as a “mule” to move stolen funds.
Questions about your account safety? Please visit the security section of our website. If you have questions or concerns about a transaction you are being asked to make, please speak to one of our staff!