Vanilla Reload Scam
Friends and internet neighbors, there is a scam that has invaded Instagram and other social media which I wish to warn you about. That scam is the Vanilla Reload scam. Please share this warning with your friends and family.
Here is how the Vanilla Reload scam works:
A person lures people in by having multiple pictures of other users showing off huge amounts of money on hand. In their pages they usually say something like, “Looking for people who’s interested in making a lot of money”.
If you contact them and express interest, the person will instruct you to purchase a Vanilla Reload card from a local CVS or a 7-11. Then they will tell you to put a minimum amount of money on your card, for example, $200. The scammer will ask for the Vanilla Reload card number, pin and receipt for the deposit.
Afterword, they will promise to add a zero to the amount which will make it $2000. They may sometimes asks for a cut of the money. The scammer says that the money will be available within 30 minutes and by the time the person realizes that they’ve been duped there is $0 balance on their card. So the scammer then blocks you on social media and doesn’t answer your calls. Unfortunately there is very little that can be done at that point.
Here is a video made by one of the victims of this scam:
To help end this type of fraud, InComm Financial Services the owners of Vanilla Reload are doing away with PIN reloads in the very near future.
How To Protect Yourself
- Treat your Vanilla Reload PIN like cash – never give it to anyone.
- Only use Vanilla Reload to reload your prepaid card or accounts you control.
- Never share receipt information about your Vanilla Reload with anyone else.
- Refuse any offer that asks you to buy a Vanilla Reload and share the PIN or receipt information by email or phone.
- Don’t use your Vanilla Reload PIN to pay taxes or fees to claim “winnings” on a foreign lottery or prize promotion.
- Don’t use your Vanilla Reload PIN for any offer that requires you to pay before you get the item unless it’s a trusted merchant.
- Don’t email your Vanilla Reload PIN directly to any merchant. Use the PIN to load your prepaid card first and then use your prepaid card to make online purchases.
Use only the website and phone number listed on the back of the Vanilla Reload prepaid cards.
This scam is also being run on other prepaid debit cards like the Green Dot MoneyPak.