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How to spot a car wrap scam

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Have you seen ads promising easy money if you shrink-wrap your car — with ads for brands like Monster Energy, Red Bull, or Pepsi? The “company” behind the ads says all you have to do is deposit a check, use part of it to pay a specified shrink-wrap vendor, and drive around like you normally would. But don’t jump onto the bandwagon. It’s only easy money for the scammer who placed the ads.

How you spot the “offer”

You might see an ad on a job board or on social media. Or someone might send you a message — maybe because they saw your profile or resume on a job site.

How the scam works

The message says you’ll make a couple hundred bucks. But when the “company” sends you a check, it’s for much more than that — a couple thousand dollars. They tell you to deposit the check, keep part of it as your share, and wire the rest to another company that will wrap your car.

Weeks after you wire the money, the check bounces and your bank tells you it was a fake. The money you kept as “your share” disappears, and the money you wired is long gone — no getting it back. On top of that, you’re on the hook for paying your bank back for the fake check. And, of course, no one’s wrapping your car.

How you can tell it’s a scam

If you get a message urging you to deposit a check and wire money back, it’s a scam. Every time. No matter the story. And if this were a legitimate car wrap opportunity, wouldn’t the company directly pay the car-wrapping vendor, instead of asking you to do it?

Has this happened to you? File a complaint at ftc.gov/complaint — select Scams and Rip-offs, then Counterfeit Checks. Want to know more? Read our articles to learn how to spot variations on fake checks and money wiring scams.

Scam Tags:  Job Scams

Comments

They contacted both me and my son by text message:

Dear Applicant, Thanks for your response, Your car has been chosen for the advertisement. It is very easy and simple, no application fees required, this is how it works; the basic premise of the "paid to drive concept" BluePrint Organic" seeks people, regular citizens,professional drivers, and all car owners above eighteen(18) years old,to go about their normal routine as they usually do, only with an advertisement for "BluePrint Organic" plastered on their cars. The advertisements are typically vinyl decals, also known as "auto wraps" that almost seem to be painted on the vehicle, and which will cover some portion of your car's exterior surface. What does the company gain from this type of advertisement strategy? Lots of exposure an awareness; the auto wraps tend to be colorful, eye-catching and attracts lots of attention. Plus, it is a form of advertising with a captive audience, meaning people who are stuck in traffic can not take their eyes off the ad vehicle. This program will last for three(3)months and the minimum period you can participate is one(1)month. You will be compensated with four hundred dollars per Week ($400.00/week),which is essentially a "rental" payment for letting our company use your car. BluePrint Organic shall provide detail-er that will handle the advert placement on your car, these detail-er have been tested and confirmed perfect for the job in order not to leave any damage on your car after the end of the program. There will be no fee for gas since you are not driving to any where else apart from your daily routine .Please provide the following information so that we can confirm you for this posting and send you further information; Full Name: Age: Occupation: Make of car/year: Address:(NOT PO Box) City: State: Zip code: Do you have a driver's license? Phone Number(s) mobile and home : Email Address: We shall be contacting you as soon as we receive this information, we looks forward to working with you. Hiring Manager

They contacted both me and my son by text message.

I got the same message from a job board today for UTZ Snacks offering 700 a week. I looked up company and what they pay their sales etc not great pay so that was my clue then found this thank goodness. Will not respond to their scam.

I got a check for 3750 in the mail for a car wrap from Joshua Buter;
I knew from begining that it would be scam, ust wanted to see how they are doing it. The reason I knew was because I only drive3 miles a week and noone will ever see my car :) why are they selecting me to pay $700 aweek? also for that price, they can buy a car and wrap it :).

Bridget Small, you are top notch - thank you for ALL of your excellent info.

This is a big scam...everyone that gets a check, Look where the check comes from before u deposit it. It comes from some other place. Then check n c where they want u to send the money..

I have received a check for $ 2,600.00 from American Southwest Credit Union, For me to advertisement michelin on my car? But they say email them I did. Then say deposit the check and I keep $600.00 and send $ 1,000.00 To both Cole Douglas and Murray Douglas 2876 Windy Ridge Pkwy Atlanta, GA but he did one name then the other. Like I was not going to catch the same address.

The check also had Latoya Mitchell & my name. I dont know this people. I have received a check for $ 2,600.00 from American Southwest Credit Union, For me to car advertisement But they say email them I did. Then say deposit the check and I keep $600.00 and send $ 1,000.00 To both Cole Douglas and Murray Douglas 2876 Windy Ridge Pkwy Atlanta, GA

i am literally going back and forth with some guy now who's telling me that he's legit. i asked him for photos of what the advert will look like. So with that, i contacted the number on the advert. Which is a bbq place in New Jersey. They have no idea about this. when i told the person texting me, he said that HE was the only person that i could speak with. and that he actually works for Red Blue Energy Drink. He said " all i need to do is listen to him as he's in charge of the process". HAHA laughable. sorry buddy, but i will call whom ever to confirm this $500.00 per week offer.

Further to my earlier comment. The phone number for the person TRYING to scam me... 201-479-3397 says the advert is for Dickey's Barbecue Pit. But, he works for Red blue energy Drink. HMMMM. That was one of the RED flags.

Hi I have been contacted by a company to wrap my car with Dr Pepper decal. I just verified with Dr Pepper headquarters and it was confirmed to me that it is a scam. I am to receive a check tomorrow for $500 and after it's cashed then a "specialist" comes to my home to place the decal. How should i proceed. Obviously I am filing a complaint. What do I need to do to stop this scam? Thank you for your help.

We got one of these checks three days ago via USPS, along with the letter from the “Payment Secure Department” which was a poorly cut 1/3 page of a standard letter size paper. It had no header, was poorly worded, and had no contact info except a number to text them name, cell, email, etc etc etc to get further instructions to be sure the funds are secure. It did not mention sending money back. The company on the check was in Oklahoma and is a legit company which apparently deals with oil industry, but I had no idea why we got it, so I put it aside, searched but didn’t find any scam info.. Today my husband got email from a guy claiming to be representing Dr. Pepper following up and asking if we got the check. It was a Gmail address, again with no contact information. It wasn’t until I saw this email referencing Dr. Pepper that I knew it was a scam. The old adage holds true.....if it looks too good to be true, it is.

I just got one from Micheline tire company but they said they would come take care of placing decal and removal themselves however when I went to their actual website I couldn't find anything about it so I'm going to have my bank hold the check few months or til it bounces or actually clears once I find out though will post results here

Just received an email confirming that Kickstart energy drink will be sending me a check for $2950 and that I was to keep 800 for my first two weeks pay and that someone would come to my home to wrap my car and I would pay them the remainder of the money After all of these comments if I receive a check I will be having it checked out by police department or my bank

How long did it take to get the bad check after you agreed to their terms and conditions?

Car wrap scam with a check for $2450.55 from JP Morgan Chase bank. Says the check is from Cabot Oil & Gas. Looks like a payroll check. Contacting Cabot tomorrow.

I almost fell for this! After I googled it to make sure and saw all these messages and realized it was a scam I backed out just in time! Thanks for all the input!

Listen to be sincere i understand your concern i know you're trying to protect your self out from bad people out there but I don't want you to be thinking negative and i want you to know that this is 100% real and legitimate job that you can do and !! my religion does not allow me to cheat on others..... THIS IS MESSAGE THEY SENT BACK TO ME WHEN I BACKED OUT! LOL MY RELIGION DOES NOT ALLOW ME TO CHEAT OTHERS.... REALLY!?!? HAHA

cyrilwfy@ gmaill. com hiring manager for Tropicana drink contacted me via Facebook, about wrapping my car with their advertisement. I responded...several text messages later, received a text from 812-625-7425 saying I had been selected, even sent me a check with the instructions mentioned in this article. I wrote back to cancel the check and am trying to turn them in to authorities.

I received one from a sweet treats ice cream I haven’t gotten a check yet but after reading this I’m quite unnerved and disappointed that it’s looking like a scam

Jelly Belly Car Wrap. I answered an ad on Facebook but did not include my address while waiting for approval. Since reading the article, I have already asked them twice to delete my messages and my # since I am no longer interested.

Check the bottom of the check where the account and routing numbers are. One way you can tell the check is fake is if they use repeating numbers such a 9999999. I responded to an e-mail sent to my university email. When I got the check in the mail, there were no instructions, return address, or any information indicating where it was sent from. I called the bank listed on the check and they confirmed it was fraudulent.

I just received a text message about a promo advertisement for Byrne Dairy to put on my car ... $500 and $50 for gas a week for three months ... said they will send cashiers check.. is this legit or a scam ?

I just received the same advertisement and I got the check yesterday for almost $3000, but I am not sure what to do with it either. Has anyone responded to you other than me about it?

This is a total scam! Call the bank it is drawn on. Can be a legitimate account but give them the remitter's name.

I just deposited a check from Bud Light Lime Energy drink for $1,950. They never asked me to wire them money, but did tell me someone would come by my house to wrap the vehicle and pay them then. I wasn’t going to even tell them to come until I knew the check cleared, but after this I now know it’s definitely a scam.

I wish I had seen this. Why isn't this on the news warning people

Isn’t any way this is going to happen.
Same story...text, email, check coming, $500 weekly, pay wrap company. Hint water advertisement.

I recently received an email after signing up on one of those sites that says "make money from home". This specific email asked my for my location and the type of vehicle I had as if I am in one of their targeted areas for the "vehicle advertisement wrap" I could make money for just driving my vehicle around town. Several week later from answering the initial email I received a text asking if I was still interested. I said yes of which they confirmed my address and mailed me a check. Then I received specific instructions via text telling me to put the money in my account and then proceed to Wal-Mart to wire the funds to the person who would be installing the wrap. Well I did not follow the instructions, I took the check to my bank who passed it to the fraud department of which I hope these people get caught. This is the 4th time in 11 years that some one has tried to use me for fraud! When in doubt, contact your bank!

This is a scam. I received a text message of earning $600 a week with a car wrap. I sounded like a great way to earn extra money. But when I received a check in the amount of $2500 with no paperwork with the check I began to do my research. Why would they send me a check to pay for the installation. They should pay the installers. Not me. I was asking them question about the company that was going to install the wrap and would they take it off and was your company going to be responsible if there were damages. I am not going to deposit the check because it is a scam.
The address on check came from Interactive Brokers LLC; 16719 Huebner Rd Bldg 4; San Antonio, TX 78248. the address on envelope was Advantage Resourcing; 80 Chambers Blvd; Bardstoen,Ky 40004-9074

Patrick Hans from Colgate just sent me a 1,465.00 check to wrap my car. 500 a week for 6 weeks. 3,000.00 to drive around in a tube of toothpaste. Lol. Think ill pass.

Conspiracy theory time.... What if the fake checks these people send out is a elaborate scheme by the banks to make us citizens pay the banks more.

I got a check today for $4500 from a Kierra L Fogle. I can’t believe they still had the nerve to send it as I’ve already told them I know they are a scam when they couldn’t answer basic questions I had for them. I believe it was for a car wrap for a company called “sweet treats”!

I will not be cashing. It’s a check from Navy Federal Credit Union. Becareful folks!!

Yeah the mewest scam is a Layswrap.com..i just got one..so be careful people!!

Glad I checked. I was texted by a “wrap” company, $500 a week. They will be surprised to find out I do t use banks or checks. I only gave them my name and address. Then I got suspicious because there has been no MAIL on this. No co tract, no finding out where to deposit the payment they promise, no phone calls I lie even a number with which to call them. I figured if it’s too good to be true, it’s a scam. Thanks for all your information. You saved me.

I didn't know it was a scam..I told them I was not interested anymore and they still sent the check.Now I don't know what to do with that check..I don't wanna have any problems.Should I take it to the police?

Yo! So i just got one, its from Lays and the only pay $200 and they pay for the wrap and pay for the removal of the wrap. I have the option to renew contact after the max time was met, minimum time is 8 weeks. Anyone get on from lays?

I got one from Lays 1998.00 and they told me to keep 250 and use the rest for the wrap.It came from Andrew Cole

I'm going through this right now. What are we supposed to do with the check? And also I'm afraid because they know my name and address and the type of car I drive, what should I do.

This is happening to me as we speak. Dr.Pepper is who contacted me. lol wish I could send you all the picture.

Anyone receive one about Walmart from a Mario @ 424-261-4354?

Received for Coca Cola Energy Drink today...

I received a text message from a place called Xyience Energy Drink. They are supposedly sending me a check for the full amount and I am supposed to deposit it and take my part out. The guys name is Kevin Morgan but the wording on his email is really strange like he isn’t from the United States. How do I find out if the check is legit or not?

I was scammed by a fake mystery shopper program. The same way. I actually looked up the company but did not ask how they operated. I assumed it would work out. I lost about 1300 dollars due to this. I'm still fighting with my bank because they allowed it. I handed the check to the teller. Im currently working with consumer financial protection bureau to get it resolved. My bank is not covered under FDIC. So yes in short don't do it.

Thanks to reading this I just called my bank. I deposited a check for 4800 bucks!!!! I called the bank and informed them of what could be going on. Luckily I hadn't spent the money yet!!! Still waiting for the bank to call me back after they confirm if the check is good or not. Mine was for 5 hour energy

angelicamanor94@
for this woman the SCAM for Bud Light
Hello,John Criado we are sorry for the late payment it's Fedex courier service that have problem but it have been solved so we will like to bring to your notice that the check has been mailed to your address Via FEDEX with this tracking #783854028880 expenses and your first week payment for your "BUD LIGHT BEER "Auto wrap advertisement it will deliver to you today.So once you have the check take it to your bank and have it deposit and let me have the deposit slip to confirm the depositing then withdraw out our graphic designer funds out once the check clear your bank for more instruction to follow about to get the money to them and Our specialist will come to your place next day the check clear your bank to install the decal on your car asap. Get back to me once you got this message for the confirmation.

I told them I only take payment in Bitcoin.

I got one of these today for 5,450, number 860 468 5448, from Sunoco, check is on mancora bar, purivan resturant. No nank information on the check. Mailed from vickie hernandez from bluebird corp. Number 478 822 2256 naturally no answer

I just received a check for $2,500.45. It was for a car wrap. Check is from Spectrum Credit Union. Sounded too good to be true so I called SPECTRUM & they said it was a scam.

Just got an email from Fujitsu Global from a David Goodman with the same thing wanting to wrap my car my check supposed to arrive today any suggestions

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