COLLEGE STATION A student at Texas A&M says she was scammed out of more than $2,000 after she replied to a job posting she found on Craigslist.
Hailey Koch, 19, is a sophomore studying marketing at Texas A&M. She says she pays for part of her tuition and all of her living expenses on her own, which is why she went to Craigslist to find a second part-time job in September.
Koch found a seemingly perfect job working for a man named "Joseph Conner." The man told her the job would involve running errands and paying bills. He sent her a check for $2,300 dollars, told her to keep $300 as pay, then buy prepaid debit cards for him with the rest.
Koch followed the instructions. A few weeks later, she found out the check had bounced and the money had been drained from the debit cards.
"My heart sunk, I was like 'no please don't be true'," said Koch. "It has been stressful. I have overdrawn from my bank account like a hundred times, and I'm actually borrowing money from my roommates to pay my rent this month."
Koch admits she is a trusting person and missed some red flags, so we asked police for tips on how to avoid similar online scams.
"If it's a situation where the person refuses to meet in person, or always has an excuse as to why they can't meet, or they'll have what would normally consider abnormal banking demands..." said Lt. Chuck Fleeger, College Station Police Department.
Police say the bottom line is if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Koch reported the scam to College Station Police, but she says she was referred to the FBI because of the nature of the internet scam.