Idaho Attorney General Settles Fraud Suit With Western Union

Feb 1, 2017

Credit Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho’s Attorney General says Western Union has agreed to a settlement that involves a series of scams and more than 2,000 Idahoans.

AG Lawrence Wasden says scams are very active in Idaho right now, and especially affect the elderly. Scammers contact their victims and often pose as relatives or officials from the IRS. They demand payment from the victim in the form of a wire transfer, such as through Western Union.

Wasden found more than 2,000 complaints by Idahoans to Western Union between 2004 and 2015. Victims reported losses of $2.4 million dollars.

Wasden and AG’s in other states said those wire transfers defrauded consumers. They said as part of the settlement, Western Union will put in place an anti-fraud program. It will also include training for employees to spot the scams as they’re happening.

Western Union will also pay states $5 million to pay for the investigation.

A federal settlement last month between the Justice Department and Western Union created a $586 million restitution fund for victims.

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