WELLS Fargo took $2,500 away from a family’s bank account after they fell victim to a scam.
A family in Deltona, Florida, lost thousands of dollars in just four minutes due to a Walmart scam.
Jason Hardy spoke to local ABC affiliate WFTV about the bizarre incident which saw $3,500 removed from their account due to unusual transactions.
Hardy and his wife saw that they had 15 different charges from Walmart in under five minutes for items they did not order.
Hardy’s wife received several alerts on her phone warning the couple of unusual activity.
“One after another, and she said, ‘You might want to look at the bank account because I’m getting all these weird transactions,'” Hardy told the news outlet.
The transactions were for 60 nightstands which were all shipped from Hong Kong, according to the tracking information.
In addition to this, all deliveries were going to various addresses near the Hardys home all with different weights on the shipping label – despite them being the same model of nightstand.
“It wasn’t good, because you know, I can’t afford to be paying, $3,500 for stuff that I didn’t buy,” Hardy said.
“Some of them weighed less than one pound. One was 0.2 pounds.
“The highest one I think was about 14 pounds.”
After the couple contacted Walmart, the retailer automatically removed $900 of the charges and directed them to deal with their bank over the remaining money.
Wells Fargo then returned $2,500 as provisional credit before later taking the money back.
In a letter to the couple, the bank said: “We concluded this is a dispute between you and the merchant.”
After being told by Walmart to deal with his bank, Hardy felt stuck in the middle of “no man’s land,” as one finance expert called it.
“When you find yourself in that no man’s land between the merchant and the financial institution, the reality is you just don’t have a lot of recourse,” James E. Lee, the COO for the Identity Theft Resource Center said.
Hardy filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and Walmart emailed him to detail their belief that the transactions were not his and that the seller had been removed.
Following this, Wells Fargo returned the $2,500 over two months after the scam was performed.
Hardy felt “very frustrated” by the situation because he “did not make these purchases,” he told the outlet.
Hardy did not reveal how his account was hacked, but the couple had their debit card on file with Walmart.
Wells Fargo issued the following statement following the resolution: “We are happy to report that we resolved the issue for our customer.
“To make a claim decision, we rely on accurate information from both our merchant and our customer.
“Once that information is received and correct, we solve the matter for our customers.”
Lee pointed out that immediately challenging unrecognizable or suspicious transactions is the best first step to take.
In addition to this, he suggested filing a police report, alerting the Federal Trade Commission, and making a complaint on the FBI’s Internet Crime website.
Lee’s experience in the industry saw him suggest that the Hardys became victims of a drug trafficking scam.
“They’re being shipped in different size bodes, that might look like it’s a legitimate item,” he said.
The U.S. Sun has contacted Walmart and Wells Fargo for comment.
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