WALMART has been accused of allowing scammers to use its money transfer services to scam shoppers out of hundreds of millions of dollars.
The Federal Trade Commission continues to release information that could prove the giant retail chain failed to protect its customers’ cash.
According to an amended complaint, Walmart was allegedly aware that scammers were improperly using cash-to-cash transfers for fisheries programs.
An investigation conducted by the FTC revealed several cases of scammers using the service to receive payments as part of telemarketing programs such as Sweepstakes scams, advance loan scams, IRS identity scams, “grandparent” scams in needy relatives, and others.
This is an effective method for scammers because, according to the FTC, it’s nearly impossible to track cash collected from Walmart after someone has picked it up.
“Walmart has turned a blind eye for years while scammers have taken advantage of the failure to properly secure the money transfer services offered at the Walmart store,” reads a press release.
“Walmart failed to properly train its employees, warn customers, and employ procedures that have allowed scammers to withdraw cash from its stores, the FTC’s complaint states.”
The FTC alleges that the alleged abusive transactions harmed consumers in a variety of ways.
The payments allegedly allowed transfers with fraudulent characteristics to be withdrawn, allowed cash pickup for large payments, and allowed money transfers to be used for telemarketing purchases, which violate the telemarketing sales rule.
The commission said the alleged incidents showed that Walmart had no or ineffective anti-fraud policies and failed to properly warn consumers about the risks of cash transfers.
The group voted unanimously to file this complaint in the US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
The US broadcaster The Sun has reached out to Walmart for comment, but the company last year claimed the FTC’s lawsuit was unfounded.
“Walmart will defend itself aggressively against this lawsuit,” the company said.
The shocking claims come after Walmart was one of several major retailers targeted by bomb threats to extort money from them.
According to a report in the Wall Street JournalThe threats were made in a number of areas including New Mexico, Illinois and Wisconsin.
Authorities have announced that the threat will be made and the caller will demand money, bitcoin or gift cards.
They would then threaten to detonate the bomb if payment was not made.
Whole Foods, Kroger and Walmart are all among a growing list of retailers facing the threats.
No suspicious items were found at vulnerable sites, according to police investigating the cases.