How to Know if a Money Gram Is Fake?

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MoneyGram money orders can be a convenient method of making a payment and sending or receiving money instead of using cash, checks or a credit card. However, some people have attempted to commit fraud using fake MoneyGram money orders. To avoid becoming a victim, look for the security features on the form before you accept it. MoneyGram introduced a new version of the form in July 2010, but the older version is still valid. Any MoneyGram without the official features of the older or newer document is suspect.

Front Features

  • The "stop sign" above the "Pay to the order" line in front of the document is heat sensitive. The icon is clearly visible when you apply heat, such as from your thumb. Look for the text "original document" in the background and MoneyGram's verification number on the left side, under the money order number ("call 1-800-542-3590 to verify"). The top edge of the document also contains a warning band that lists the security features.

Back Features

  • The back of the money order contains a MoneyGram watermark that is visible when the document is flat, when you hold it at an angle or when you rub it with a coin. In addition, the service agreement has been moved to the back of the updated money order, the wording of the service charge has been modified and the fee has changed to $1.

Proof of Purchase

  • MoneyGram money orders have a perforated side or stub that displays the number of the document. Tear it off the money order before sending it. It serves as proof of purchase and a means of tracking the money order if that becomes necessary.

Old MoneyGram Money Order

  • According to MoneyGram, the older version of the company's money order remains valid until it is completely replaced with the new one. This version has fewer safety features than the new one. The older safety features include a heat-sensitive icon close to the bottom of the money order and a small-print border around the amount box that reads, "MoneyGram Payment Systems." The older document also includes a tear-away proof of service stub.

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