The Certified Check Scam has been around for a long time but recently it is getting more common. The different means of the scam is also getting more diverse.
It used to be that a “certified check” was just like guranteed money. With the advent of computers it’s making fraudulent people generate what looks like an actual check but in reality it’s not worth the paper it’s printed on. There is also some companies that you can call and tell them to write a certified check on either a non existant account or an account someone has stolen the identity of another. Yes, it will have what looks like a bonified routing number and your bank might even accept it into your account.
Here is the problem. It might take one or two days for it to go through the banking cycle before your bank knows that the check was bogus. By that time you’ve already used the fraudulent money and the bank will demand you place the money back into your account.
Remember, just because you deposit a check into your banking account you are still responsible for making sure the money of the check is good. Checks are only “promissary notes” between the issuer of the check and the person receiving it. If the person writing the check did it fraudulently, you are still responsible for the amount of money the check was written for.
Don’t fall for the scam that someone from a foreign country wants you to be an “agent” for then here in the USA. They supposedly want you to collect their money receiving a certified check for them from a transaction or supposed customer. Then you are supposed to deposit this certified check into your personal banking account. Then you are supposed to keep your commission out of that money and send them the remainder by writing them a check from your account. Needless to say, the certified check is gogus but by the ime you have found out they have alrerady cashed your check and you are out all the money. Most of these scams like this are coming out of Nigeria or some African country.
The best way to receive money from a transaction on EBay or Craig’s List is to use Pay Pal or credit card. Of course cash is always welcome.
Remember, if it sounds too good, it usually is.