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A government program that pays your bills?

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Have you heard about a government program that will pay your monthly bills for an up-front payment or processing fee? Here’s a short version of the rest of this post: It’s a scam. Don’t do it.

We’ve heard that this scam is happening in some African-American church communities: people approach church-goers with this so-called deal. And, because it comes up in church, the scam might seem like it could be legit. But take it from me – and the FTC: there is no federal program that pays your monthly bills in exchange for payment of any kind.

What really happens if you pay these scammers? They look real for a minute because they “pay your bills” electronically – but then they cancel the payment. You think your bill is paid, but you’re stuck with not only the original bill, but also a late fee because your payment wasn’t actually processed. And now the scammers have your bank or credit information. Doesn’t sound like much of a deal at all.

If you need help paying bills, or know someone who does, there are some legitimate government sites that can connect you with programs that help with things like medical bills and energy services for people who are eligible. But they won’t ask you to pay them. Also check out how to make a budget or find a credit counselor who can help you manage your money.

Tagged with: debt, scam
Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Comments

Yes, I received a communication like this. Someone hacked into a friend's MESSAGE function on Facebook, without her knowing it. The person used her name on the message function and contacted me about this "government program." I knew it was a scam so I asked for the information. I was told to call "James Williams" at 303-578-7765. Perhaps you can call this number and find out who it is. I did not call, I just wanted to get this information so I could report i t. Thank you.

They didn't hack into her Message function on Facebook. They started a new account using her name and picture and sent you a friend request possibly telling you that their old account got hacked and to delete it or some other such reason for the new account. Sometimes they don't give reason,just send out friend requests to people already on their friends list.

They did the same thing to me, they hack into Georgia Harrell message function facebook and started a new account using her name and picture and told be she has received grant money and she did not has to pay it back I thought that was good so she gave me the information and the was text me with all the information about the grant and I did what he said and he want me to pay 800.00 but I told I did not have 800.00 and he paid 150.00 for me and I paid the rest of it and he said the money will be believed at 2:00 pm and the money did not come at 2:00 then told that ups man has a very accident and I has to pay for and drive to bring the money and he want me pay 1000 and told I was not send anymore money to him. He was text to pay 300 and I will get my money I did not do that him name was Mr. Greene and his phone was 2027651890

Someone did hack into my friends message. All of our previous messages are still in the chat!!! Crazy and they are giving me the phone number to attorney Marie Williams is the name. Only getting the information so I can report it! No new account at all!!

Omg, I received a friend request on messenger from my aunt, not realizing that it was fake and that I already had her in my messenger contacts. Someone had taken on her name, adding a middle name, and used her familiar pic. "She" claimed to have just won a federal grant of 90,000 for paying bills, house payments. I was directed to a Bill Robert Facebook site to see if I qualify too. The scam had me going for a while, I am ashamed to admit. As soon as I acted suspicious, the scammer stopped talking to me. I hope I am not hacked! Be careful out there!

I too was introduced to Global Grant Fund by a so called Friend. But when I called her, she was frustrated & trying to clear herself. The name I was given was Frederick Cypher at 617 681-9994. Is there any way these thieves can be arrested?

If you gave someone your bank, credit card or utility account information, you can act to protect yourself from identity theft. Use these tips from IdentityTheft.gov to fix problems.

You can report your experience to the FTC at FTC.gov/Complaint. The information you give will go into a secure database that law enforcement uses for investigations. The comments you put here on the blog don’t go into the law enforcement database.

How do we get our Facebook back they put all their details stole my account I didn't know it was a scam what do I do

I got a message from a supposed friend today on messenger telling me she had received $50,000 to pay off her bills. I questioned it and asked her why the heck did she think the government was handing out free money randomly. She responded by saying why don’t you think they would? I told her it was a scam and she is not who she claims to be and I googled the phone number she gave me which was in an Asian country, and told her it was not in Atlanta like she said it was. She told me to TEXT a Mr. Lawson, And gave me that number. I told her I was on to her and she was not the person she claimed to be and I would be reporting To my friend that her account was hacked. Which I promptly did. Funny, as soon as I said that, I stopped receiving messages.

I also received the same type of thing from a friend on messenger offering me $300,000 and all I had to do was pay 750 right now I realize this is also scam and reported it to the friend that her account was hacked.

I also received the same type of thing from a friend on messenger offering me $300,000 and all I had to do was pay 750 right now I realize this is also scam and reported it to the friend that her account was hacked.

I received a message from a friend on the Global Grant Fund which was hacked. The Agent's name is Wayne and his phone number is (218)245-0113. He's a scam, wanted me to pay $1,000 in Amazon codes to receive $100,000 in cash by way of the UPS Men. Even knocked it down to $500. No way would I fall for that......

This just happened to me someone used my cousin info on fb and messaged me asking if I knew or heard of the IFC program. Claiming she had just received $20,000 that she didn't have to pay back. Gave me the number 843-603-4821 telling me to call an attorney named William Henry. When I told the fake person it was a scam the person insisted that it was 100% legit and no scam at all! Pissed me off too because at first the person was really acting like my family member who had earlier been down pretty bad! I blocked them on fb and told my cousin about it. Man people be careful for real!

Omg. That happened to me. I thought it was someone from church until they asked for money. ITS A SCAM!! Another way to tell is click on the picture n it won't get a profile

Just happened to my mother!! She said she got messaged thru Facebook by someone claiming to be her cousin. Claims to have received a $200,000 grant from a company called Global Grant Fund no strings attached, no paybacks. Tried to convince my mom to do it. My mother just got scammed out of HER WHOLE LIFE SAVINGS, LOST HER HOUSE, AND CAR thru an online romance scam thru facebook!! When will people learn not to trust FACEBOOK!!! All scammers go thru here!!! Anybody can get into facebook, look at your homepage and based on all the information you have put out there, they can create a fake account or steal the identity of anybody from your friends/family list, and pretend they are somebody you know. Beware folks!!! Messaging is dangerous and not trustworthy!!

Be watchful!

yes i have received calls texts and emails about this thank you f.t.c. for informing us that this company is not a legit business i almost responded to this mess again thank you

I know a man in Houston Texas that is targeting people. His name is Marlon Wortham.

Please tell me more. What does he deal with? Foreign currency or oil get rich scams?

Please tell me more. What does he deal with? Foreign currency or oil get rich scams?

Agent William Henry ‭+1 (832) 608-7185‬

Someone told me to contact him about a grant for 10,000 dollars

GREAT POST

I'm not a cyber Bully I'm a 100% Disabled Veteran. But I can call Yahoo.com a cyberbully definite.

Got call from 206.629.6080 (Shoreline, WA) at 11:07 EST today that sounds like this. I told them I would report them.

I was just called tonight from a similar number (206) 472-6031 (Robert Cale) in Washington State. They said I was getting a Federal grant for $9200 and needed to pay $200 first before I could get the money from moneyogram. Said the $200 was to register my name with the FTC first before they could release the money.

I've received "many" of these identical to yours darrell. The latest targeted my mom from a number #727-213-5733, claiming to be ayden hayes. said when she got the 250.00 iTunes gift card the $8,500.00 Federal Grant would be sent to her "while he was on the phone with her.. YEA OKAY... People as soon as You tell the scammer the numbers on the card, Your simply out $250.00... If the gov., wants to give you some money, they dont need any from YOU to start...

same here the number was 206-596-0886 hindu woman said something similar. I asked if she was sure that she was calling from Washington DC not from India she became rude and told me to go home.

It happend to me on march 24 ,2017 same thing pay up 200 and my money was released but they make me pay 700 $ more when the ask me to pay up 1200$ i stop i knew i was scam

I just got a call just like this. It was from Ohio 513-878-0000. They gave me a conformation number and a phone number 513-878-0464. I called the original number. It was a security guard at a retirement living community.

I just received the same call today. The phone numbers and names were different. +1 (202) 335-6812 Gabby and then to call and activate the grant was 651-203-5406. However they wanted me to go to Walmart and purchase a 600 gift card so I could be registered with the FTC. I asked him when did the US government start dealing with Walmart and he hung up. This is two days they haves called me. I block the numbers but they keep calling on other numbers.

Please help us by reporting this to the FTC at FTC.gov/complaint. The information you give goes into a secure database that the FTC and other law enforcement agencies use for investigations. Thank you.

I got a messenger message from a young lady that I didn't know until I got her friend requset,told me about the fgg, who to call to get help to apply, then I got told approved, but I needed to choose how much o wanted,then got told I need to pay a clearence fee of 200,then I would get the money delivered to me,kept texting me to be honest with th em,text me more after I left a message that I wanted to speak to him over the phone?? I think this Chris William's "agent" chris williams is a liar ,cuz there is no way anyone is sending me a grant for 200 bucks,giving me thoudands??5713995441 call see for yourself??

Thank you for these alerts. I post them on my Face Book Page in hope I can save someone loss, pain and grief! May God Bless You for this shared information!

"If it seems too good to be true...."

Great news!

Some Area Agencies on Aging have volunteer money management programs to seniors who need help managing their checkbooks.

Anyone who says that you have to pay an upfront fee is clearly a scam, because most legit businesses or programs won't tell you to pay until after should they be charging for anything.

Thank you for your post, I have scammers

0bama is no longer in office , Just maybe it may stop

Thank you for the heads up. Yes, I just had another scam tried on me just this morning saying I could get money from the "Global Grant Fund", - also watch out for this one people. I knew straight away and it backfired on her pretty quickly. For those of you who are on facebook, DO NOT send a friend request to or accept a friend request from JUDITH HELEN HERD, she is another SCAMMER. With scams, they never know how to spell or use grammar properly - these are a dead giveaway, and also, if they ask for money for a "clearance" or "transfer" fee, it is a scam. Hope this helps.

Make the Phone Companies responsible..!! They make money from these scammers by selling them services..!!

I agree. Big phone companies should either aid a consumer complaint until the issue is resolved, or be held financially accountable. I traced a scammer online only to discover 147 other folks complained to the same phone company about the same number. These crooks knew my name and number, so these days, that's all you need. The phone company can stop the number (at the least), from being used & if they don't comply after 147 complaints, I think it should than become their problem as well. After all, by not stopping the number from being used, than they are actually "ALLOWING FOR THE CONTINUED CRIMES THAT THIS PERSON(S) IS COMMITTING"! They have legal tea s on standby, but they only use them for big situations while the individual consumer (even if they are not a direct customer), suffers, sometimes tremendously because the phone company refuses to help!

I just received a called telling me that I was selected to received a grant of $9,200 related with the ARRA of 2009 thatI should go to a western union and pay 200 to claim the grant really!!!!

I got the same one, same day on Thursday. So annoying I was busy with my kids. Waste of time!!

I just received a call stating that I was pre-quailfied to reveive a $10,000.00 gov grant because my credit was good and no late payments. I told the caller it sounded like a scam and they hung up.

I am victimized by a big scammer by fake email from one of the dating site. A woman named Monica Lin Brown with his boyfriend Christopher Hutchinson Who worked for UN sent me an amazing story to invest in my home but they have stolen 8000 USD WHICH they received the money with cooperation of Western Union staff in New Delhi.Please help me if any body can refund my money.

Do the scammers offer to pay monthly bills for a short-term or long-term?

This was just sent to me via FB messenger (the account was hacked): Lol....i didn't beleive it untill my money was brought to my place (325) 307-2141 Here text them now,tell them you are ready to claim your grant am sure the will attend to you All i was asked to do was to fill their form and pay $980 for the delivery

I got the impression after I pay a fee and give them my checking account number & utility account number, they will pay my bill with my money on the due date.

I received facebook inbox message asking have I heard of government grant for people who need help financially or eith bills. Then she gives Facebook page to go to. And a phone number to a delivery agent. You send message to say you want to claim your money. You are asked to fill out form. Then a list is sent with amount of money you want along with the delivery/shipping fees. Ex: $900 fee for $40,000. The fees go up with the amount you want. The highest $8000 fee for $1,000,000. I'm pretty sure this is a scam. They have a Facebook page.

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