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Be wary of scams using Green Dot MoneyPaks

Prepaid debit card use is the fastest growing payment method in the U.S. Billions are spent each year on the prepaid cards, according to Network Branded Prepaid Card Association.

A tool often used with prepaid cards is MoneyPak, which can be used to reload prepaid cards, add money to a PayPal account without using a bank account or make same-day payments to major companies. Scammers are beginning to use these MoneyPak’s instead of wire services because of their convenience and they’re untraceable.

Your Better Business Bureau has tips on how to use Green Dot MoneyPaks safely.

A Green Dot MoneyPak can be purchased at more than 60,000 retail stores, including Meijer and Walmart. You can add $20 to $1000 to one, dependent on the store. Most of the time, the funds are available for use immediately with a few exceptions. A MoneyPak works just like cash. A card comes with a scratch-off 14 digit serial number. Reveal the number and anyone, including crooks, can transfer your MoneyPak funds to their own prepaid debit cards.

Your Better Business Bureau offers tips to help avoid becoming a victim of scams involving these cards:

• Use your MoneyPak to only reload prepaid cards or accounts you control.

• Transfer money to your PayPal account before paying the merchant if you’re using MoneyPak with PayPal for eBay or other online merchants.

• Never give your MoneyPak number directly to a merchant.

• Be wary of Web site advertisements linking to Web sites where you’re asked to pay with a MoneyPak.

• Never pay a fee with your MoneyPak to collect a prize or sweepstakes winnings or get a loan.

• Avoid offers only accepting MoneyPak as payment.

• Check for a list of approved MoneyPak partners.

• Remember, if your MoneyPak gets in the hands of a scammer, Green Dot isn’t responsible. Your MoneyPak isn’t a bank account, and the funds aren’t insured against loss.

If you have any questions about the Green Dot MoneyPaks, you can always get help from your BBB. Go online to or call (937) 222-5825 or (800) 776-5301. Or go online to

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