Recovery Scams: How Not to Get Scammed Twice

Fund Recovery Scammer

When you fall victim to scammers, the one thing you wish you could do is turn back time. Unfortunately, that’s not possible. So, the next step many scam victims consider is trusting a so-called recovery specialist they would often find randomly online to get their money back.

Well, we have some bad news for you.

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There’s another type of scam known as a refund or recovery scam that targets scam victims.

Here’s how it typically works: someone claims they can help recover your lost money or the item you paid for but never got. But here’s the catch: you must pay them upfront before they step in and help you.

If you fall for this, you could end up getting scammed twice in a row and losing even more money. Let’s explore how these refund or recovery scams work and what red flags you should watch for.

How Does the Recovery Scam Work?

There are three main variations of this scam. We’ll break down each scenario below.

1. Fund Recovery Specialists

Fund recovery scammers pose as fund recovery specialists, claiming they can help you recover the money you’ve lost to a previous scam.

recovery scam attempt
Image Source: Reddit

These scammers often ask for personal information and an advance fee to recover your funds. They might label this fee as a “commission” or a “trust fee.” They’ll tell you the money acts as a guarantee that you want to work with them.

While many scammers operate this way, it is worth mentioning that not all fund recovery companies are scammers. The asset recovery partners that Scam Detector works with are verified. We have seen people recover their stolen funds after collaborating with our partners.

2. Tech Hackers

These scammers claim they can recover your online accounts that have been banned or blocked. They operate similarly to scammers who use the fund recovery model. They promise quick results and ask for an advance fee to start working on recovering your account. Some may say they don’t require any upfront payments, but that’s just to get your attention.

recover banned account sca
Image Source: Reddit

They also ask for your personal information saying they need it to recover your accounts. This could include your username, password, or other sensitive details. With this information, they can potentially access your other online accounts. Once they get what they want, they disappear without helping you.

3. Customer Support

In this scenario, scammers pretend to be customer support agents who can help with specific complaints. Sometimes, they claim they work within a consumer advocacy group or another organization that protects consumers’ rights.

They often seem very professional and convincing. They may even mention a recent issue you’ve had to convince you they know what they’re talking about and gain your trust.

They use the same trick and will ask for an advance fee to speed up work on your complaint. They claim this fee is needed to cover special processing of your complaint or other reasons. Additionally, they ask for personal information, claiming these details are needed to verify your identity or process your request.

Once you pay the advance fee, these scammers simply vanish without a trace.

How Do Recovery Scammers Know I’ve Been Scammed?

Recovery scammers who pretend they can help you recover your funds usually contact you after you complain on social media or online forums about being scammed.

For example, you may complain on Reddit or a dedicated Facebook group about recently being scammed. The scammer sees your message and then contacts you, offering their fund recovery services.

Unfortunately, sometimes, the scammers promising to help you get your money back are the same fraudsters who tricked you in the first place. They know all the details about the previous scam and this makes them seem more credible.

Scammers also sell personal details about their victims on the dark web, another way they get the contact information of people who have already been scammed.

As the Federal Trade Commission explains, these lists are called “sucker lists.”  Scammers believe that people who have been scammed once are easy targets for another round of scams.

Red Flags: How to Avoid This Scam

Unsolicited Contact

If you didn’t ask for help, be wary of why someone is suddenly reaching out. Scammers often contact their victims out of the blue to catch them off guard.

They often try to create a false sense of urgency and say you must act quickly to get your money back. Pressure leads to hasty decisions. They’re counting on your emotional reaction to pull their scams successfully.

If someone contacts you out of the blue, offering to help you recover your money or banned account, do not respond immediately. Instead, take a moment to do a quick background check and evaluate the whole situation.

The Advance Fee

Recovery scammers often ask you for an advance fee for their fund recovery services. They want you to pay upfront for their help without a solid guarantee that you’ll get your money back.

This is a major red flag that you should not ignore. Be wary of anyone asking for an advance fee. They’re trying to take advantage of your emotional state after getting scammed to squeeze more money out of your pocket.

Be cautious and always verify anyone who offers fund or account recovery services.

Personal Information

Be suspicious if someone asks for personal details like your bank account info or passwords. That’s a major red flag.

Scammers can use your sensitive details to steal your identity, withdraw money, or make unauthorized purchases.

If scammers get your login details and passwords, they can take over your online accounts and potentially use them for additional scams. If you have accidentally have given sensitive information to a scammer, here’s an article that can help you to remove your personal information from the internet.

Spelling and Grammar Errors

Scammers don’t bother to proofread their messages. Many times, English is not their first language. That’s why you might see spelling and grammar mistakes, as well as strange or unnatural wording.

This is a crucial indicator that the message is not from a legitimate source and that something is not right. As always, if something feels off about the message, trust your instincts.

How to Report Scammers

Warn your family and friends to know about this scam to prevent them from falling victim.

You can report scammers and any suspicious activity to the Federal Trade, and the FBI Internet Complaint Center by using the pages below:

How To Protect Yourself More

Do you want to receive notifications about the most notorious scams on a regular basis? Subscribe to our scam alerts. You will receive periodic emails from Scam Detector with exclusive tips. Those will include info on how to prevent fraud and insights about the newest tools you can use to fight crime.

Feel free to explore additional articles on related fraud. Last but not least, if you had any bad experiences, make sure to use the comments section below to expose the scammers!


Scammers will always try to squeeze as much money as they possibly can from their victims. They’ve invented recovery scams because they think people who have fallen victims to scammers once can be scammed again.

Don’t trust offers that come out of nowhere promising to get your scam money back. This keeps you safe from falling for scams again.

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4 thoughts on “Recovery Scams: How Not to Get Scammed Twice”

  1. Don’t believe even advertising on social media from companies claiming that they can recover crypto scams. It impossible and those companies always ask for payment upfront. It’s like a plague

  2. I got scammed this way. They are still trying. Indian, African, Russian speaking people even. Still contacting me saying they found my money.
    Then they ask you to download AnyDesk, asking you to login to your banks to verify that it is really you and to see how much money you really have. They ask you to confirm the payment for something saying this is the commission/ mirror transaction and the money will be returned to you straight away…. Yeah… they never come back.
    Random scammers still are trying to trick me phoning from voip numbers. All lies and lies. Too long stories to tell here how it really looks like.
    They know you lost lots of money before. They know you’re desperate. Once they even pretended they are from FCA (Financial Conduct Authority- UK)….

  3. Christine C Laking

    i received an email from a person involved with Amina group who are involved with the Amina Bank in Switzerland. They stated that a number of fraudulent crypto companies had been closed down & their monies were gathered for purpose of compensating people who had been scammed by these co’s. They stated that I would owe 14,770 up front on an amt of 418.000 being held in escrow. Way too good to be true????? Has anyone heard of this ruse?

    1. Yes, it’s way too good to be true. If some bank or agency had really recovered your funds, they would not ask for extra money up front to release your funds. I get these emails all the time.

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