Town Creates Nation’s First “Craigslist Transaction Safe Zone”

Town Creates Nation’s First “Craigslist Transaction Safe Zone”

While the vast majority of purchases made via Craigslist go down without a problem, those don’t make the news; it’s the rare case of people getting scammed or attacked that earns the headlines. In an effort to reduce the chance of those sorts of incidents, one Pennsylvania community has created what it claims is the nation’s first Craigslist Transaction Safe Zone. [More]

Your Electric Company Will Not Call And Demand Payment By Prepaid Card

Your Electric Company Will Not Call And Demand Payment By Prepaid Card

While your local utility could call you up and demand immediate instant payment using a prepaid debit card before shutting off your natural gas and power, they will never actually do that. The owner of the Squeeze Inn, a fantastically-named restaurant in California, learned that the hard way when he panicked and sent $1,000 to scammers claiming to represent Pacific Gas & Electric. [More]

(lungstruck)

FTC: Tech Support Representatives Pretended To Be From Microsoft, Facebook, Scammed $2.5M From Consumers

It makes sense that consumers with a lack of computer knowledge would seek services and assistance from well-known tech companies like Microsoft and Facebook. So it should come as little surprise that a shady company would use this information to dupe consumers out of millions by pretending to be from the popular tech firms selling support services and software. [More]

(Listener42)

Company Touting Work-From-Home Opportunities Must Pay $25M To Consumers Who Made No Money

Here are a few clues that the employment “opportunity” you received in that email is a scam: 1) you’re required to pay your new employer hundreds of dollars for a starter kit or computer program; 2) once that program was purchased you’re encouraged to buy more programs for thousands of dollars; and 3) your new employer promises that you’ll be able to make thousands of dollars in a short period of time without ever leaving your couch. That’s about how it worked for a company the Federal Trade Commission recently ordered to repay consumers $25 million. [More]

(Timothy Barnes)

FTC Fines Company $10M For Achieving A Trifecta Of Annoyance: Mobile Cramming, Spam Texts And Robocalls

There are few things worse than getting incessant robocalls. Unless you’re getting robocalls, spam text messages and being charged for mobile cramming. The Federal Trade Commission says all of those horrible, terrible, no-good, very-bad elements were part of a massive scam affecting millions of consumers. And now the companies in charge of the alleged scam are paying a hefty penalty: $10 million. [More]

(Evan Jackson)

Former Nursing Home Manager Accused Of Stealing $460K From Residents

Authorities in Michigan say that a manager of a nursing home spent several years siphoning off residents’ funds, making herself wealthier to the tune of nearly half a million dollars in the process — and she wasn’t caught until after she’d already been fired. [More]

Comcast Sat By As ID Thieves Set Up Multiple Accounts, Ran Up Thousands In Charges

Comcast Sat By As ID Thieves Set Up Multiple Accounts, Ran Up Thousands In Charges

A local news report in Nashville about a local man whose ID was stolen and used to open up two bogus Comcast accounts hundreds of miles away in Louisiana has uncovered numerous additional complaints from consumers in the area who say they have also been sent to collections for fake Comcast accounts opened in the same city. [More]

Fake Travel Agent Allegedly Scammed Customers Out Of $130,000

Fake Travel Agent Allegedly Scammed Customers Out Of $130,000

People instinctively trust others more if we have something in common with them, and that instinct led some people of Fijian origin who live near Modesto, California to a scammer. A man who was originally from Fiji set himself up as a travel agent and accepted money to book flights, then gave customers phony paperwork without making reservations, or canceling return tickets while travelers were out of the country. [More]

(Tina Kugler)

Woman Claims A Stranger Stole Her House Using A Fake Deed, Moved In

You can’t pick it up, shove it in your jacket and walk away with it, but a house can still be stolen, it seems. A senior citizen in New York says an ex-convict faked the deed to her family home in Queens and moved in, effectively stealing her house. [More]

The scammy notices sent out to consumers look like bills and give you multiple ways to pay, but the small print indicates that it is "not a bill."

Newspapers Warning About “Readers Payment Service” Subscription Scam

All around the country, people are receiving subscription renewal notices from a company called Readers Payment Services (or various other names) for any one of dozens of newspapers. The invoices, which ask for your credit card and personal information, may look legitimate, but the newspapers are warning their subscribers to not fall for this scam. [More]

(БРАТСТВО)

Hero Nurses Save Grandparents From Wiring Thousands Of Dollars To Scammers

Visiting nurses can make the lives of their patients easier and healthier, but “stopping scamsters who prey on the elderly” isn’t in their job description. Yet that’s exactly what two visiting nurses in Connecticut did in the last few weeks, both on their own time and while they were working. They weren’t afraid to butt in and save the near-victims thousands of dollars. [More]

(Mary T)

Police: Woman Scammed Victoria’s Secret Out Of $53K Using Stolen Underwear

There’s absolutely no problem with making money from selling underwear. Unless, of course, those frilly, fancy underthings never belonged to you in the first place, in which case you’ll be in a whole lot of hot water. Police in Florida say one woman managed to bilk Victoria’s Secret out of $53,000 by basically selling the store’s own lingerie back to itself. [More]

Not the kittens in question. Just more cute ones. (catastrophegirl)

Some Horrible Person Stole $3,000 From Woman Who Just Wanted To Adopt Some Cats

Cats! We love’em. Well, lots of us do. But despite that urge for a cuddly companion to call your own, it’s good to remember that you should always be careful when buying pets from someone you don’t know. One woman looking to bring two new kittens into her home found that out the hard way when she sent $3,000 to a stranger, and got exactly zero cats in return. [More]

Safeway Employee Convinces Shoppers To Not Fall For $4K Scam

Safeway Employee Convinces Shoppers To Not Fall For $4K Scam

If you work at a store and some customers come in trying to put thousands of dollars on prepaid debit cards, you’d probably get the sense that something is amiss. The question is: Do you do anything about it or just help them put the money on the card and hope they aren’t being scammed? [More]

(Paxton Holley)

That Amazing $70K Work-At-Home Job Probably Isn’t Real

If the following comes as a surprise to you, that’s okay. This is why Consumerist exists. Today, we’re here to remind you of the following: if someone e-mails you to offer a work-at-home job promising a nice middle-class income for only a few hours of work every week, it is probably a scam and you should run away. [More]

Like Monopoly money, but it buys real stuff.

Judge Hits Bitcoin Ponzi Scheme With $40.7 Million Penalty

If someone convinces you to invest with him by promising returns of 7% weekly, and that he’s never lost money and there’s no risk, you should be incredibly concerned about giving him your money, regardless of whether it’s a dollar or a Bitcoin. But the operator of a Bitcoin-based Ponzi scheme in Texas was able to rake in millions based on completely empty promises — and now has to pay it all back. [More]

Court Shuts Down $11 Million High School Diploma Mill

(bluwmongoose)

Not everyone graduates from high school, but for nearly a decade, a company in Florida has been offering what it claims are “official” diplomas from “accredited” schools to consumers who took an online test (and paid betweeen $200 to $300). Except federal authorities say these diplomas are as bogus as they sound, and this company has allegedly scammed consumers for at least $11.1 million. [More]

(Scott Lynch)

Court Shuts Down Payday Lenders Who Made Millions Off “Loans” Borrowers Didn’t Ask For

Whether you think that payday loans are a necessary financial offering for people with bad credit to get low-value, short-term loans or a predatory product that only results in more debt for the nation’s poorest consumers, you’d agree that no loans should be doled out without the borrower’s approval. But one network is accused of putting unauthorized payday loans in consumers’ bank accounts so it can eventually siphon off even more money. [More]