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Money mule scams

What are money mule scams?

A money mule refers to a person who receives illegally obtained money from someone into their account, then transfers it to another person or account. Some money mules know they are assisting with criminal activity. Others are unaware that their actions are helping to move the proceeds of crime.

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What is a money mule scam?

Could being a victim of a scam actually be a criminal offence?

If you’re ever offered a commission or payment in exchange for receiving money and are asked to transfer it to someone else, you could be being targeted as a money mule.

A money mule is an someone that receives illegally obtained funds and transfers them onto a different account. The purpose of these transactions is to launder money from illegal activity like scams or fraud.

Acting as a money mule is illegal. Even if you’re not aware of the illegal activity that the funds relate to, you can still risk being convicted of a criminal offence.

Look out for these warning signs to avoid becoming a money mule:

  • Job offers that promise easy money and sound too good to be true.
  • Any request to open an account to make transfers on someone else’s behalf – even if you think you’re being asked by a friend or family member.
  • Any offer of payment or commission for receiving and transferring funds.
  • Any requests for access to your banking details.

Help stop scammers in their tracks by following Scamwatch’s advice:

STOP – Don’t give money or personal information to anyone if unsure.
THINK – Ask yourself could the message or call be fake?
PROTECT – Act quickly if something feels wrong and visit www.bendigobank.com.au/security for support.

What to look out for

  • Online job adverts with offers of easy money, minimal hours and no experience required.
  • Be wary of offers from people or companies overseas as it makes it harder for you to verify them.
  • Requests to open a bank account or cryptocurrency at someone else’s direction.
  • Sending money to an online love interest, even if the love interest has sent you money first.
  • Unsolicited emails, text or calls advising you of a competition win that you do not remember entering - if you are redirected to a WhatsApp chat it’s likely to be a Job Scam or Mule Scam.

How to protect yourself

  • Don’t accept a job that asks you to transfer money. They may tell you to send money to a ‘client’ or ‘supplier.’ Say no. You may be helping a scammer move stolen money.
  • Be wary of offers from people or companies overseas as it makes it harder for you to verify them.
  • Never send money to collect a prize. That’s always a scam, and they might be trying to get you to move stolen money.
  • Never give your login details to anyone.
  • Research the company or person online to confirm they are legitimate.
  • Decline any easy money offers; if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Let us know ASAP if you think you have been the victim of a scam

Things to remember

  • Never provide your 6-digit e-banking security code to anyone - in person, over the phone or online even if they claim to work for your bank and have personal information about you.
  • Never provide a caller with remote access to your computer.
  • We will never ask you for your e-banking PIN, e-banking password or 6-digit e-banking security code.
  • We will never ask you to login to e-banking via a link sent in an SMS or sent in an email.
  • We may call from time to time and ask to verify your identity by asking for your verbal password. However, we will never ask you for any PIN, password or security code relating to your e-banking. If you feel uncomfortable, you can always verify our branch contact details on our website and call us back.
View other types of scams

If you need help or more information

Phone

If you have clicked on any suspicious links and entered your e-banking details:

Call 1300 236 344 (in Australia) or +61 3 5445 0666 (from overseas - standard international call charges apply)

Monday to Friday - 8am to 9pm AEST/AEDT*
Weekends (Saturday and Sunday) and some public holidays - 9am to 8pm AEST/AEDT

*Excludes Christmas Day

SMS

If you have received a suspicious SMS message claiming to be from us, you can forward it to 0429 557 997 for investigation. 

Please note you will not receive a personal response from 0429 557 997.

Email

If you have received any suspicious emails, you can forward them to us via email. 

Please note you will not receive a personal email response from us.

Bendigo and Adelaide Bank acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the First Peoples of this nation and the Traditional Custodians of the land where we live, learn and work. We pay our respects to Elders past and present as it is their knowledge and experience that holds the key to the success of future generations.

Bendigo and Adelaide Bank Limited, ABN 11 068 049 178 AFSL / Australian Credit Licence 237879. Any advice provided on this website is of a general nature only and does not take into account your personal needs, objectives and financial circumstances. You should consider whether it is appropriate for your situation. Please read the applicable Disclosure Documents before acquiring any product described on this website. Please also review our Financial Services Guide (FSG) before accessing information on this website. Information on this page can change without notice to you.

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