When you owe money to the Internal Revenue Service, they don’t call you up. Instead, they send letters through the mail. Yet people send thousands of dollars every day to scammers in faraway call centers who claim to represent the federal government. If you don’t know that the call is a scam, it can be super scary to be threatened with seven years in prison over the phone. [More]
The same technology that means you can talk to friends or loved ones anywhere in the world for pennies per minute or for free has a harmful downside: it also means that scammers anywhere in the world can call you cheaply, too, using overseas call centers and an utter lack of human empathy to drain the pockets of victims, who are mostly senior citizens. [More]
We’ve shared warnings about lottery scams before, but the industry of scammers hurts people beyond the victims and their families. In Jamaica, lottery scams are a massive industry that’s a serious concern for law enforcement. Their victims? Elderly Americans, who send along money to cover taxes or fees on the money they’ve won. [More]
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]
Phone-based scammers have traditionally employed techniques that either prey upon a victim’s greed — “You’ve won a new car! Just pay the taxes to us now and it’ll be yours” — or protective instincts — “Your grandson is in a hospital in Belarus and needs money ASAP to get treatment” — but these criminals are increasingly using fear to wring cash out of unsuspecting folks. [More]
Jim filled out a Target survey for the chance to win $5,000, and was excited to get a seemingly related phone call from someone telling him he had won a $200 runner-up prize. Then his heart sank when the guy on the other line demanded a $2.95 shipping fee up front to collect his money. Noting the dead giveaway of a con, he refused.
Cassandra is looking out for her fiance’s grandmother, who is savvy enough to know the people who call her and say she’s won a bunch money are liars.
The BBB has issued a warning about a distressing telephone scam that’s increasing in popularity. The target? Grandparents. Scammers based in Canada are thought to be randomly dialing US phone numbers until they reach someone who sounds like a senior citizen. They then pose as a grandchild who has been in a car accident and needs emergency money.