The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has sued Walmart, alleging the company had allowed scam artists to use its money transfer services for fraud that cost consumers “hundreds of millions of dollars.”
Walmart, which offers some financial services, acts as an agent for money transfer services such as MoneyGram and Western Union.
In its lawsuit, the FTC alleges that for years, the company turned a blind eye while scammers took advantage of its failure to properly secure the money transfer services offered at Walmart stores.
The company did not properly train its employees, failed to warn customers, and used procedures that allowed fraudsters to cash out at its stores, according to the FTC’s complaint.
The FTC is asking the court to order Walmart to return money to consumers and to impose civil penalties for Walmart’s violations.
“While scammers used its money transfer services to make off with cash, Walmart looked the other way and pocketed millions in fees,” Samuel Levine, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, said. “Consumers have lost hundreds of millions, and the Commission is holding Walmart accountable for letting fraudsters fleece its customers.”