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Ten Top Money Transfer Safety Tips

Feb 29, 2008
The demand for reliable, efficient and safe money transfer systems has never been greater. Increasing numbers of migrant workers, globalisation and the internet have all helped the money transfer industry to become a US $250 billion per year industry. That figure is likely to increase over the coming years aswell, the current growth level is 10-12% per year. This of course has lead to more and more companies entering into an already fragmented money transfer market and they are naturally all keen to get their slice of the revenue.

Many companies enter the market with new innovative ways to transfer money both on and offline and offer very competitive transfer fees compared to the traditional market leaders such as Western Union and Moneygram. In the main most companies are genuine and reliable and offer good services however with money, accoutn numbers, personal details and so on all being involved the need for safety and security within the company is very high.

Of course everybody wants to save money but the cheapest company may not always be the best option. Here are ten tips that will help you transfer your money safely:

1) How big is the company? If the company is a new outfit with only a couple of members of staff in a home office then there is probably going to be a higher chance of something going wrong with the transfer. A medium to large sized compnay would probably be a better bet.

2) For large sums of money it is generally accepted that a bank wire transfer is the safest method of sending your money. The main reasons for this are that a) all customers will have had to supply appropriate forms of identification and b) the actual wire transfer is a message sent to another bank in the formof a highly secure encrypted message which is extremely difficult for anyone to intercept and interpret.

3) Certainly never send money to strangers and people who you do not know. The most likely time for this to occur would be from an online auction or from other internet purchases. There is always the chance that they will simply take the money and run.

4) Look out for phishing scams. These are often entered into first when someone receives an email which pretends that it is from a genuine business that may normally need your personal and financial details such as a bank, Paypal, Western Union and so on.

The structure and presentation of the email may well be very difficult to tell apart from the legitimate business. Of course on this ocassion the email is a fake and will probably attempt to get you to click on a link which will forward you to another fake web-site again looking very genuine. Here they will attempt to get important personal/financial details from you. The best way to avoid such scams is to simply go direct to the merchnts site and not through a link in an email.

5) Can the company answer the following questions quickly and easily:
What is the exact fee and exchange rate for the transfer? How will the money physically end-up in the hands of the proposed recipient? When will the funds become available? Are there any extra fees for using credit cards?

If the company can answer those questions easily it is a good sign that they are at least well organised.

6)Advance fee frauds. This fraud also known as the 'Nigerian fraud' or the '491 fraud' is one of the commonest online frauds. These can result in considerable financial losses and occassionally personal danger. Usually they involve you puttin up front a large amount of money in order to gain a further considerable amount of money later, which then never appears.

Initial contact is usually via email and the sender often claims to be from some Third-world country. They may go on to give a semi-plausible explanation for why they need money, for example: a large amount of money needs to be claimed in order to prevent the goverment from taking it. Sometimes the message may contain references to topical news events to try and convince you that they are genuine. The sender will eventually offer to give you a cut of the money if you help them get the money. Usually they say that they need the money up-front in order to bribe corrupt officials or for some other legal purposes that will help release the money.

So, never believe anyone is who they say they are in an email and certainly do not be lured in to parting with any money or personal details.

7)For online transactions never share any passwords with anyone. Chane it if you think someone else might know it and try and change it regularly as good practise. Include numbers and figures in your password and make it random and hard to guess. Do not use the same password for different accounts or services. If you think someone may have your password, change it immediately.

8) Be educated, fraudsters are constantly coming up with new ways to fool you. Here are a few scams that you may see: Lottery frauds, Up-front payments, millions waiting to be shared, jobs involving you acting as a broker. If something seems to good to be true then it probably is!

9) Furthermore here are a few questions you may wish consider asking in order to doucble check on the company:

If the money is not received by the specified time/date will I receive any compensation? What rights do I have if this situation were to occur?
Does the recipient have to pay a fee aswell?
What rights do I have if the money is not received at the promised time?
If the recipient is unable to pick up the money transfer for some reason, what is the refund policy?
What ID is acceptable for the recipient to provide in order to collect the money transfer?

And finally...

10) Use your common sense. Do this and you will avoid the majority of scams and will be able to transfer your money safely, quickly and easily.
About the Author
Money Transfer Review provides free money saving comparison charts, safety tips and money saving advice for all your money transfer needs. Simply click: Money Transfer to discover more.
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