Nacha’s Payments Innovation Alliance Releases Infographic Warning Against Becoming an Unwitting Money Mule


HERNDON, Va., Feb. 29, 2024 – Nacha's Payments Innovation Alliance, a membership program bringing together diverse global stakeholders seeking to transform the payments industry by better meeting the needs of the modern ACH Network and the evolving payments industry worldwide, has released a new tool financial institutions can use to educate their customers about money mules.

A money mule transfers or moves illegally acquired money on behalf of someone else. Criminals recruit money mules to help launder proceeds derived from crimes such as human and drug trafficking. While some money mules know they are supporting criminal enterprises, many others are unaware that they are helping criminals profit. 

This new infographic, developed by the Alliance's Consumer Financial Exploitation Project Team, presents seven key questions to help consumers determine if they have unintentionally been part of a money mules scheme. It also contains a section that financial institutions can customize with their contact information to facilitate reporting.  

Education is essential in raising consumer awareness about potential scams. "Consumer fraud affects individuals across all communities. Beyond financial loss, it can evoke feelings of embarrassment and sadness, with some consumers unwittingly becoming complicit in fraudulent activities, potentially leading to prosecution," said Consumer Financial Exploitation Project Team Co-Leader Angela Nielsen, AAP, APRP, ETA, CPP, Director of Product Strategy, Nelnet Payment Systems. "The Payments Innovation Alliance Consumer Financial Exploitation Project Team leverages Nacha's connections with financial institutions to provide educational resources, empowering communities to protect themselves against fraud."

According to Federal Trade Commission data, consumers reported losing more than $10 billion to fraud in 2023, a 14 percent increase over the previous year. "By educating financial institutions and consumers with tools like this infographic, the Payments Innovation Alliance Consumer Financial Exploitation Project Team strives to make a positive impact on the prevention of consumer fraud," said Consumer Financial Exploitation Project Team Co-Leader Mary Gilmeister, AAP, NCP, President & CEO, Macha. "We will continue to develop materials to help the financial industry educate their staff and account holders, building on the Alliance's previous efforts to address elder financial exploitation.

The Payments Innovation Alliance's Consumer Financial Exploitation Project Team is dedicated to creating educational resources and tools to enable the industry to fight financial fraud and collaborating with the financial crimes ecosystem, including law enforcement and consumer advocacy groups.To download the infographic, learn more about consumer protection initiatives, or join the Payments Innovation Alliance, visit