Producers should be alert to an increase in fraud and schemes. Criminals are targeting agriculture producers posing as legitimate buyers and sellers of livestock, hay, equipment and other agricultural products.
Avoid doing business with anyone that randomly contacts you, especially with an email or social media request. Criminals are proficient con artists that paint a “too good to be true” picture, offer cash incentives and full payment by cashier’s check. Cashier’s checks are commonly forged and can leave you without your product or payment. Criminals often pose as legitimate cattle operations and attempt to buy complete herds of cattle.
Here are a few TSCRA Special Ranger tips to avoid a loss:
- Use a known customer for sales and purchases.
- Verify new or unknown customers through a known and trusted third party.
- Only accept direct wire full payment from unknown customer’s on large transactions.
- Do not send wire transactions without physical possession of your purchase.
- Ask questions, document and contact your Special Ranger with suspicions.
Ranchers who are concerned about a sale or buyer are encouraged to contact their local TSCRA Special Ranger to report suspicious activity. You can locate your TSCRA Special Ranger here or call 800-242-7820.