Ad Alert

AutoZone Imposter Car Wrap Scam

If you see one of these scams in the rear-view mirror, floor it.

Ad Alert

AutoZone Imposter Car Wrap Scam

After our ad alert on an M&Ms car wrap scam last month, a reader reached out to say she had been targeted by a similar scam, this one involving fraudsters posing as the auto parts retailer AutoZone.

She said she was initially contacted via text from an email address rather than a phone number, which in and of itself may be a red flag. The text said she could “earn $500 each week for three months” if she allowed her car to be “wrapped” in an advertisement for AutoZone. It asked for the make and model of her car, along with her full name, address, mobile phone number and email address. After she provided the information, she got a follow-up message from a different email address, [email protected], saying she had been accepted into the car wrap program and giving instructions for what to do with an incoming check:

I was to deposit the check immediately and let them know “so that it can be processed and cleared as soon as possible.” …I was supposed to take out $550 for myself and send $980 to a detailer in [Wisconsin], though I live in [New York].

The scammers initially told our reader to send the money via a payment app like Venmo, but she didn’t have one. They then directed her to do a “Walmart-2-Walmart” money transfer, a preferred payment method for fraudsters.

Fortunately, while she deposited the $2,950 check they sent her, which came in an envelope with a return address in Mesquite, Texas, she waited for it to clear before forwarding any funds. She used the wait to research the “opportunity,” realized it was a scam (after a Google search turned up multiple online forums and alerts saying so), and notified her bank before sending anyone money.

She may be one of the lucky ones.

How car wrap scams work

The goal is to get you to withdraw money from your checking account after you deposit the check but before it bounces (because it’s a fake check), leaving you with a hole in your bank account. The “specialist” or “detailer” who will install the decal on your car? They aren’t coming because they don’t exist.

Some companies have legitimate car wrap programs that pay consumers to shrink-wrap their car in the brand’s advertising but it is also a common scam. After writing about scammers masquerading as Monster Energy in December 2020, we have found fraudsters posing as Fiji Water, Fairlife Milk, M&Ms and now AutoZone.

So, if an opportunity catches your eye, proceed with caution: Before you give up any personal information, confirm with the brand that it actually has a car wrap program. reached out to AutoZone for comment. Check back for updates.

Find more of our coverage on car wrap scams here.

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