Phoenix (Thursday, May 1, 2014) -- Attorney General Tom Horne is warning Arizona consumers, particularly students, to be wary of telephone solicitors who offer to send thousands of dollars of grant money if the consumer pays a couple hundred dollars through a money card. Green Dot cards are a popular method through which scammers now conduct business as they are as good as cash and cannot be traced. These reloadable debit cards are available at numerous locations and can be used much like a debit card.
In this most recent scam, consumers are told that they will receive a grant worth thousands of dollars. They are instructed to load a lesser amount onto a Green Dot card. The scammer then either picks up from the consumer’s home or instructs them to read the number on the card over the phone. Once the scammer has the card number, they have access to the funds. Unfortunately, consumers learn too late that they are not recipients of grant monies.
The federal government, which administers grants through “Grants.gov” has set up a hotline for victims of this “Green Dot Scam.” Consumers who have lost money can call 1-800-447-8477 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.