How to spot a car wrap scam

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.

Comments

Question: I have 2 phone lines available. Why don't YOU have a phone # that goes DIRECT to a person?? That way, when I get a robo-call, I could call YOU direct so you could trace the call while I played along with the robocaller. Maybe that way some of these clowns could be caught & prosecuted. TX

I'm with you-what can we do - is anyone ever prosecuted?

I contacted monster drinks they said they use company owned cars only and regular employees not the public or contractors.

I do not pay attention to those calls. If it is a robot i hang up. I have had them go so far as to call and say. Thank you for holding. Good bye. Or please hold for the next available csr. I hang up. If they want to talk to me, make it a human being not a programed call machine that puts me on hold for an hour.

I've gotten a few robo calls(my answering machine pu ALL incoming calls) where they act like they are actually talking to someone, for instance they will ask "did I catch u at a bad time?", then even tho I say nothing they say "ok, great I will only take a few minutes of your time", I still say nothing, they say "would you spell your full name & address to be sure we have the info correct?" I say nothing but the call goes on for 5 minutes w/out me saying anything.
Robo calls from politicians at election time really get my goat! Thats an automatic NO vote for them.

Are any of the car wrapping advertisements real?

I reckon they are real , But you aint fixin to get paid nutin

I would think very rarely. A company would save money wrapping their own property. And we " free" prizes they give the consumer( bumper stickers, window decals, tshirts, glasses, sunglasses, etc.) Is free advertising, so really no reason too. If they're a start up, they would be goimng smaller.

Thanks for information, God bless all of you keeping us safe

Why would anyone want their car shrink wrapped?

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