Colorado Springs

SCAMBUSTERS: How to catch the check overpayment scam

Scam targets job seekers

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - It's hard to miss those enticing ads offering up easy jobs for good money, and sometimes these offers are so convenient they'll try to find you directly, but it's important to recognize when they might be scams.

Check Overpayment Scam

Like most scams, this one can be executed in a hundred different ways but this one tends to target job seekers the most.

In this particular example, scammers will hack job sites, social media, and even Craigslist to target their victims.

A typical victim will get a message from an interested scammer asking for some type of work. They request your personal information and a payment quote.

Then they'll typically send you a check for more than you requested and ask you to send back the difference to pay for 'international fees'.

Meet Deb Guida

Deb Guida, a retired veteran, is looking to find part-time work.

"I put ads on Craigslist and Facebook so people would know I'm available to tutor their children," she said.

Within hours, she got several texts from someone claiming to want her services.

"They asked me to tutor their daughter three times a week and wanted me to send them my availability and cost expectation," Guida said.

So she did, but the scammers sent her a check for more than she requested. The catch is they wanted her to send back the difference for international fees.

"It's really scary. You have no idea whether they got your information or if they hacked you," she said.

Tips and Tricks

It's really important to check for poor grammar. That can signal these messages are coming from overseas.

Det. Jon Price with the El Paso County Sheriff's Office said scammers usually target specific victims for a reason.

"People are being researched now, whether it's social engineering on Facebook or the suspect is just taking the time to find out about the person before contacting them," Price said.

Report a scam

If you are a victim of a scam and want us to investigate further for you, contact me at

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