Scams involving things like bogus products and stranded relatives often hinge on one act: people wiring money through a service like Western Union.
Now the company is paying out a huge settlement because the government says Western Union ignored repeated warning signs allowing many of its customers to be scammed.
The Federal Trade Commission and Justice Department say Western Union has ignored rampant fraud. The company settled the case by agreeing to pay $586 million.
U.S. & World
Investigators say Western Union received more than 260,000 fraud complaints since 2004, in which its customers lost almost $350 million.
The government says Western Union did little to investigate the scammers who repeatedly used their services.
Western Union says it's working with the FTC to settle the case and it has doubled compliance funding.
Western Union also says it's beefing up its security and technology to stop wire transfers that fund scams.
Here's the good news for consumers: the government says that "$586 million is available to compensate the victims of these frauds."
You can apply for reimbursement through the Justice Department's website by clicking here.