Car wrap scam promising cold hard cash hits Prairieville
PRAIRIEVILLE - A scam promised easy money, and a lot of it, if you were to wrap your car in a company's logo advertising product. But this fake job offer could end up costing you a lot of money.
Anthony Bailey came across an offer like this recently and shared his story with WBRZ.
"People will try to get out to do anything to try to get you to spend your hard-earned money," said Bailey.
While on his phone, Bailey says an ad popped up alerting him of a job that promised a large pay out. He says he clicked on the ad and answered a few questions providing his name, phone number, car make and model, and address. Shortly after he submitted his information, he received a text message saying he'd been selected for the job. It sounded easy; allow a company to stick an advertisement to his truck and drive around as he normally would. He'd be paid $500 a week to allow "Fresh Haze IPA" to wrap his Ford in advertisement.
After confirming his address, he received another text message promising his "first week allowance" of $500 that would arrive in the form of a check and was provided with a USPS tracking number. The messages were said to come from "Recruiting Department" or "Howard."
The next day, Bailey says he received a check in the mail for $1,918. The return address was for "Buffalo Store" in Dallas, TX, and the check was from "Health Matching Account Service INC," of Houston, TX. Bailey says he was told to deposit the check, keep $500, and use the rest of the balance to cover the cost of supplies needed by the graphic artist to do the wrap job on his truck.
"He was going to give me instructions when I got to the Walmart on who to send it to or whatever," he said.
Bailey never deposited the check and instead contacted 2 On Your Side. He was quick to realize the situation was "too good to be true."
The business name listed on the check, "Health Matching Account Service INC" is similar to an actual business in Houston, TX, "Health Matching Account Services, Inc."
The real company in Houston says it's received a number of calls about this scam that was using it's bank account. The company says that account was closed due to fraudulent activity and it's currently working with the local police.
Fresh Haze IPA is a beer brewed by Deschutes Brewery in Bend, OR. It has posted on its website saying it does not wrap vehicles in Deschutes Brewery branding for cash and doesn't recommend responding to a text or email from scammers using its company name to take advantage of others.