Trucking Scams To Be Aware Of.
You would think with so many laws,rules and regulations it would be hard to pull any scams in the trucking industry.
However, majority of these rules apply to truck drivers, and the safety of their equipment.
Here are the scams that we all know about, but never do anything about.
A company that’s suppose to be a carrier books a load from the broker. Once they have all the information and a price set, they look for a carrier that will haul this load for cheaper. Carriers also do this with their own independent contractors.
There are carriers that do not have a fuel surcharge program at all. Most owner operators do not know about it, and don’t care about it.
But the biggest scam companies pull are giving you their “fuel cards”, as an owner operator.
They want you to fill up only at certain truck stops. There is a reason for that.
They have a discount at these truck stops, which YOU DO NOT SEE.
The fuel price may be 2.84/gallon. However, there is a .30 cent discount that works like credit card cash back rewards. As you fill up, and pay for the fuel, these discounts add up, and the carrier cashes them out. With enough owner operators, filling up everyday and .20 cent a gallon average discount carriers put a pretty nice paycheck in their piggy bank.
Those are your typical scams, but let’s get into a scam of all scams.
Honestly if you’re a scam artist, or a con artist, basically if you are a FRAUD this is one of the scams that blew my mind. Only few brokerages, and carriers will cover their butts from it.
Brokers can be greedy, and carriers can be greedy. Everybody wants the mighty dollar. At certain times of the year such as the produce season when every broker is trying to make as much as possible, especially the seasonal brokers, and every carrier is trying to get as much as possible, nobody thinks of being scammed. Biggest worry is load cancelation and covering loads or trucks.
A con artist will get a phone call from a broker named Broker Z.
Broker Z calls and introduces himself as:
This is John with Broker Z and I see you have a truck in Atlanta, GA.
Con Artist: Yeah I do, what you got?
Broker Z: I have peaches weighing at 38k pounds picking up outside of Atlanta, GA heading to Jessup Maryland. Showing about 680 miles all loaded. We are trying to move it for $2200.
Con Artist: Are you able to do $3,000?
Broker Z: The most I can do is $2,500 and that’s all I have in it.
Con Artist: Ok hold on, let me check with my owner operator.
Puts the broker on mute..on his throw way flip cell phone.
Con Artist: Hello?
Broker Z: Yes, I’m here.
Con Artist: Ok my driver will take it but can he get a cash advance of $500 upon pick up?
Broker Z: Yeah we can do that, soon as he picks up, we’ll issue him a comcheck.
Con Artist: Ok shoot it over and I’ll get him dispatched.
Broker Z send over the confirmation with all the pick up information.
Now the con artist calls a carrier and represents himself as the Broker Z.
Con Artist: This is John with Broker Z, I see you have a truck in Atlanta, GA.
Carrier: Yeah what do you have?
Con Artist: I have peaches weighing at 38k pounds picking up outside of Atlanta, GA heading to Jessup Maryland. Showing about 680 miles all loaded. We are trying to move it for $2200.
Carrier: We can do it but we need $3,800.
Con Artist: *SIGH*, can you guy do $3,000?
Carrier: We can do $3,500?
Con Artist: Ok but I’m going to need the driver to fax me the BOL soon as he picks up so I can put it into our system.
Carrier: Ok, send it over.
The con artist can use PDF editor, or other softwares to make a “rate con” where he changes the original pricing, and call back information.
Once the driver picks up, and sends over the BOL, which original carrier might need to issue a comcheck for “cash advance” of $500, the con artist calls the original broker, BROKER Z, and get’s a $500 cash advance.
If he does this with 20 carriers a day at $500 that’s $10,000 a day.
This sounds insane. I agree.
However,this has been done and this is done very quickly.
Broker is busy, and is thinking of covering the load and pocketing as much as he can. The carrier is busy and is thinking of making as much as he can. The shipper doesn’t care, his load is being moved.
The Con Artist is connecting these two together by giving them what they both want. People like to get what they want, it’s how shit works.
Con Artist is using throw away cellphones, and cheap motels room to make sure he doesn’t get caught. At $10,000 cash a day you can assume this person can afford a $1,000 on multiple throw away phones, and motels, and so on. Even worse, fake ID’s to cash these checks at random truckstops.
What happens after?
Once the carrier has sent into the billing invoice of the price they thought they were being paid, the broker pays them what he thought he was paying. They will argue, and whatever else. However by the time the load is delivered, the paper work is sent out, recieved, and sent for billing, it’s been atleast a WEEK. By that time the CON ARTIST is on another phone, with another carrier, and another broker, making another cash advance deal.
Why doesn’t no one want to catch this person?
Sure the Broker Z had to argue with the carrier over the price, and sure the carrier wasn’t happy, but they still got paid money to cover their expenses, and also make a profit. They just tend to move on with bittersweet taste. Neither of them would think such thing happend.
Few carriers and brokerages protect themselves from these type of situations by having secret codes, and so on. However this is the most brilliant and ruthless idea that con artists do. I should probably be lynched for explaining how it works, but as a carrier or a broker you should also run a secure business.