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Western Union to refund millions of dollars people lost to scammers

14 November 2017

Between 2004 and 2012, Western Union processed hundreds of thousands of transactions for Western Union agents and others involved in an global consumer fraud scheme, the settlement says.

Western Union agreed to settle the case for $586 million.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine says anyone who sent a fraud-induced wire transfer through Western Union between January 1, 2004, and January 19, 2017 is eligible to receive compensation from the settlement fund. Victims were then directed to send money through Western Union to purportedly help their relative or claim their prize.

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Consumers are asked to file their claim by going to FTC.gov/WU before February 12, 2018.

“American consumers lost money while Western Union looked the other way, ” says Acting Chairman Maureen Ohlhausen of the Federal Trade Cpmmission.

DE officials say the compensation process has opened for those impacted by scammers using a specific wire service.

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The fund, administered by the Department of Justice's Victim Asset Recovery Program, was created as the result of a multi-state settlement reached with Western Union in January by New York Attorney General Attorney Eric Schneiderman, 49 other states and the District of Columbia. The form will contain instructions explaining how consumers may file claims to receive compensation.

No one associated with the claims process will call to ask for consumers' bank account or credit card number.

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Western Union to refund millions of dollars people lost to scammers