Americans are running out of TIME to request a refund when they have scammers paid through Western Union.
The intelligence service and the federal government have reached a $586 million settlement to give those affected a full refund.
To date, more than 148,000 victims have been reimbursed approximately $366 million.
According to a report by CBS News, scammers called Western Union customers and instructed them to transfer money for a relative or ask for a price.
But the money could not be recovered once sent.
Some Western Union agents reportedly worked with scammers to get some of the fraudulent funds.
The Federal Trade Commission said more than 550,000 customer complaints were registered over an 11-year period, in which fraudsters made billions.
“We recognize that in certain instances, principally in the period 2004-2012, the company did not exercise as much oversight as it should have,” the company said in a 2017 statement.
The Federal Trade Commission released a statement when the agreement was reached.
“Western Union owes American consumers a responsibility to protect themselves from fraud, but instead the company looked the other way and its system made it easy for scammers and rip-offs,” said FTC Chair Edith Ramirez.
The FTC said many of the victims were elderly.
The FTC also said funds are still available for those who have not yet filed a claim.
Those who were scammed between January 1, 2004 and January 19, 2017 are eligible to make a claim.
Victims have until the end of August to request a full refund.
The refund program is administered by the US Department of Justice, see its website for more information.
The Sun has reached out to Western Union for comment.
https://www.the-sun.com/money/5737233/americans-owed-millions-refund-money-transfer-service-scammers/ Americans owe MILLIONS in refunds after paying scammers with money transfer service – learn how to claim cash