fraud

Jeweler, Wife Face Criminal Charges Of Preying On Military Servicemembers

Jeweler, Wife Face Criminal Charges Of Preying On Military Servicemembers

Among unethical retailers, there’s a certain subset of predators that target members of the armed forces and their family. The latest example: A California couple who pushed military personnel to finance their purchases with a related business, then allegedly made illegal threats when customers fell behind on their bills.
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Akira Ohgaki

Couple Illegally Used Amazon Replacement Policy To Get $1.2M Worth Of Electronics For Free

An Indiana couple pleaded guilty recently to their part in defrauding Amazon of more than $1.2 million in electronic devices by taking advantage of the e-commerce giant’s replacement policy.  [More]

Mike Mozart

Wells Fargo Teller Pleads Guilty To Stealing $185K From One Customer

A year after thousands of Wells Fargo employees were accused of opening unauthorized accounts in customers’ name in order to make sales goals, one bank teller has pleaded guilty to also opening an account without authorization, this time, in order to steal more than $185,000 from one customer. [More]

demented_kitteh

Is Experian Letting Anyone Access Your Credit Freeze PIN?

UPDATE: Experian tells Consumerist that its authentication processes go farther than previously identified steps. The company regularly reviews its security practices and adjusts as needed.

Placing a credit freeze on your accounts following a hack or issue with identity theft is only effective if the credit reporting agency you’re working with doesn’t give ne’er-do-wells the ability to unfreeze the accounts by providing the same information that any good ID thief already knows about you. This is a lesson some victims of Equifax’s recent data breach are learning after freezing their accounts with fellow credit reporting agency Experian.  [More]

Fake Architect Sentenced In ‘Vandelay Industries’ Investigation

Fake Architect Sentenced In ‘Vandelay Industries’ Investigation

If someone is a successful architect, people assume that he or she actually is an architect. Yet a man in upstate New York who drew up renderings of over 100 buildings and received hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments for designing commercial and residential buildings has been charged with pretending to be an architect for more than half a decade. [More]

Ken Lund

Here’s How One State Is Using Driver’s License Facial Recognition To Crack Down On Fraud

Fake IDs aren’t just a problem for people whose identities have been stolen and used to make a new driver’s license, but they can also lead to unlicensed drivers hitting the roads and potentially endangering others. Officials in New York say they’ve made a serious dent in these kinds of crimes with its driver’s license facial recognition technology. [More]

George Redgrave

Stealing Your Identity Can Be As Easy As Stealing Your Phone Number

You’re smart about online security, right? Sure! You use two-factor authentication on all your accounts, you don’t use dodgy WiFi, you make sure to put a passcode on your phone, and you keep it with you at all times, never out of your sight. Unfortunately, that’s not enough to protect you. Because it only takes one thing to hijack your whole digital life: Your ten-digit mobile number. [More]

frankieleon

IRS Warns Of Increase In W-2 Theft Scams

Tax time might still be months away, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be on the lookout for possible scams: The Internal Revenue Service and FBI are warning consumers and businesses about an email scam targeting employee W-2 forms after seeing a 150% increase in incidents last year.  [More]

frankieleon

Ex-Lottery Worker Who Admitted To Rigging The System Now Facing 25 Years In Prison

Well, ping pong balls and rotating cages it ain’t: The former lottery security official convicted of trying to rig the system to pick winning numbers is now facing up to 25 years in prison for the scheme. [More]

Josh McGinn

Watch Out For Great Deals From Brand-New Amazon Sellers

The most effective scams take advantage of our greed, so it’s always good to have a reminder that deals that seem too good to be true probably are. The problem is that even if you know that an amazing deal from a seller who just joined Amazon last week and has no feedback is a red flag, Amazon’s “buy” button doesn’t necessarily understand this. [More]

Ken Fager

Dating Scammer Gets Five Years In Prison For Swindling Women (Again)

A New Jersey man who already spent five years in federal prison for scamming more than $200,000 from women he met through phone dating services is now heading back behind bars after being convicted for doing pretty much the same thing again. [More]

Louis Abate

Scammer Posing As Starbucks Corporate Convinces Store Workers To Wire $2,600

A fraudster in South Carolina combined the tradition of pranking fast food restaurants with a new variation of the CEO scam last week, convincing employees at a Starbucks to give them all of the money in the store.  [More]

David Crombie

Victims Of Mortgage Modification Scam Lost More Than Their Homes

Each year, fraudsters target vulnerable, trusting Americans by claiming that they can make their lives better. But when all the chips have fallen, these seemingly legit businesses often turn out to be just the opposite. While some of these operations will face the wrath of federal or state regulators, their victims are often left with little.  [More]

Thomas Hawk

Good News From The IRS: Tax Refund Identity Theft Is Way Down This Year

This tax season, you may remember Consumerist reminding you to file as early as possible, especially if you were expecting a refund or receiving certain tax credits aimed at lower-income Americans. New anti-fraud measures taken by the Internal Revenue Service and better awareness of the problem have apparently helped: The IRS reports that tax refund fraud has decreased. [More]

(dirtyblueshirt)

Former Audi Exec Charged In Connection With VW’s ‘Dieselgate’

Seven months after federal authorities charged six Volkswagen executives for their part in the company’s “dieselgate” scandal, they are turning their sights toward leaders at VW’s luxury sibling Audi, accusing a former executive of giving orders that led to the diesel engine cheating scandal.  [More]

The Acting Chairman Of The FTC Does Not Want Your Bank Info

The Acting Chairman Of The FTC Does Not Want Your Bank Info

While you may be flattered to receive an email that’s purportedly from Maureen Ohlhausen, the acting chairman of the Federal Trade Commission, we’ve got to break it to you: She isn’t going to email you, and even if she did, she would definitely not ask you for your bank account information. [More]

Skip Nyegard

How To Protect Yourself From Getting Scammed By Bad Movers

While you may feel yourself slowing down as the days grow longer and the temperatures go up, summer is the busiest time of the year for movers. Millions of us are likely to pack up and move house between June and September. But moving is a fraught proposition; it can be hard to tell the difference between a legitimate outfit that will properly bring you your stuff, and one that will steal from you or extort you for cash. [More]

Chocolate Reviews

The Russians Are After Our Chocolate And Slot Machines

When you think of mobsters involved in trafficking stolen goods, perhaps you drugs, cigarettes, and guns come to mind. But the more than 30 people associated with an alleged Russian crime syndicate in New York arrested this week are also accused of dealing in something a bit sweeter — 10,000 pounds of pilfered chocolate. [More]