Updates from May, 2016 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Geebo 7:04 am on May 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    Don’t be left broke and homeless when looking for a place to rent 

    Don't be left broke and homeless when looking for a place to rent

    One of the oldest online commerce scams is the rental property scam. How it works is the scam artist will usually copy a legitimate ad for a house for sale but will make it appear in their ad that the property is for rent, usually at a rate that is almost too good to be true. Some red flags when it comes these ads is that the ‘seller’ will claim that their getting ready to go overseas, or for some reason they won’t be able to meet you face to face. They’ll also try to pressure you into paying a deposit without inspecting the property. In most cases they’ll try to do that through poorly spelled emails or emails where it’s apparent that they may not be native English speakers.

    However there’s an easier way to avoid having the scam go this far. Most legitimate rental properties should be listed with the county or municipality their being rented in. The owner’s contact information should be a matter of public record and if it doesn’t match with what you’re being told or if the property is not listed at all then it’s more than likely a scam.

    Too many families have been left without a home or money falling for these types of scams. With just a little bit of knowledge you can avoid being taken online.

  • Geebo 9:34 am on May 13, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    Off topic Friday: Is Facebook censoring conservative news stories? 

    Off topic Friday: Is Facebook censoring conservative news stories?

    DISCLAIMER: This blog post is not endorsing one political party or candidate over another. It is merely discussing a topic where politics is involved.

    Earlier this week an anonymous former Facebook employee claimed to the media that Facebook purposely tries to keep conservative news topics out if its trending news subjects. It’s gotten so much attention in some conservative circles that US Senator John Thune from South Dakota has called upon Facebook to provide information to Congress about the allegations. Some have said that Congress should not be getting involved in how Facebook conducts their business however studies have shown that 30 percent of Americans get their news from Facebook.

    Then there’s the argument that if Facebook is secretly promoting progressive news stories is that really censorship? The concept of censorship can only be really carried out by an agent of the state, i.e. the government. Facebook is a private tech entity and legally could exercise any kind of political leaning it wished. However one would think it would be a bad business decision to alienate possibly half of their userbase.

    What do you think? Is Facebook purposely squelching conservative leaning stories or is it just paranoia among some politicos?

  • Geebo 10:10 am on May 12, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    Is getting a pet online animal cruelty? 

    Getting or giving away pets online is animal cruelty

    In the past Geebo founder and CEO Greg Collier had discussed why Geebo does not accept ads for pets. In his initial post Greg discussed the puppy mills and how the animals that come from puppy mills and how the animals receive inadequate medical treatment. For example a Florida man recently purchased a puppy online and the puppy already had the lethal parvovirus.

    Another reason Geebo does not accept pet ads is the number of animal abusers that seem to troll ads looking for victims.

    Even another reason not to deal with pets online is a phenomenon known as ‘dog flipping’. In the real estate business you may have heard the term house flipping. That’s when someone buys a house at low market value for the sole purpose of selling it for a profit. Dog flippers have the same intent except they’re not paying anything for the dogs in the first place. They look for ‘free to good home’ ads, going as so far to pretend to have kids and a family in order to persuade sellers, then try to sell the animals for profit to the highest bidder.

    Please deal instead with your local shelters. Not only do they have a number of animals that are in need of adoption, more no-kill shelters are opening all the time that can help find a pet a legitimate new home.

  • Geebo 8:41 am on May 11, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    Tips you need for a first time resume 

    Tips you need for a first time resume

    Previously we’ve discussed why you need a good resume but what if you’re making your resume for the first time? We’ve got you covered there as well.

    Too many times we see employment request being submitted by young people either just out of school or still in school who just give their name and phone number in their search for a job. Unfortunately most employers will overlook such requests with no other information than that.

    The regular rules for resumes still apply but since you probably do not have any employment experience as of yet you want to list whatever experience and skills you may have. List any extracurricular activities you belonged to such as athletics or student government. Don’t limit yourself to just school either. If you’ve done any volunteering in your community or through your church add that as well. Most importantly is to list any skills you may have, especially computer skills. A great deal of employers are always looking for people with skills in Microsoft Word and Excel (spreadsheets). If you don’t have that see our previous post on ow to get free alternatives to that software so you can practice.

    Lastly you want a good set of references. A list of at least three people who can vouch for your work ethic and skills. You want these people to be people in authority positions who are not related to you such as a pastor, teacher or coach. Always get their permission before listing them as a reference.

    Hopefully with these tips you and your resume can help put you in front of the competition. Best of luck.

  • Geebo 9:24 am on May 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    Use this subtle trick to spot the most clever of scam artists 

    Use this subtle trick to spot the most clever of scam artists

    So you finally found the hot ticket item that you’ve been searching for. Everything appears to be on the level so you get ready to call the seller then you notice something peculiar. Before their phone number they’ve typed a + symbol. Probably just a typo right? Don’t be so sure.

    In areas outside of the US the + symbol before a phone number usually indicates that you’ll be dialing what’s known as a country code. For example the US country code is +1 while the UK is +44. Since a great number of online scammers come from overseas they sometimes have a habit of putting the + symbol before US phone numbers even though we don’t use them here.

    Another less subtle way to notice an overseas scammer is if they ask you to contact them a messaging app. For example you may see an ad where the seller asks you to contact them through WhatsApp. Whatsapp is very popular overseas since a lot of countries don’t have cell phone plans that include unlimited texting so they use these apps instead.

    And as always one of the best tips in dealing with online transactions is to only deal locally and with cash.

  • Geebo 8:46 am on May 9, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: lenders, ,   

    Think that loan offer is a lifesaver? Think again. 

    Are online loan ads legit?

    So you find yourself desperately short on cash and some bills need to be paid or else. While perusing the internet you find an online ad promising a loan with a low fixed rate and implied promises that you’ll be approved for thousands of dollars. This has to be too good to be true right? You bet it is.

    Once again this is another overseas scam designed to separate you from what little money you may have and possibly more. What happens when you respond to one of these ads is that you’ll receive an email form to fill out asking for all sorts of personal information. Once you fill that out and send it back you’ll be told that there is a processing fee in order to expedite the loan. It’s usually an exorbitant amount and once you pay it you’ll never hear from them again. Now they have what little money you had left and possibly your personal information as well for identity theft purposes.

    Unfortunately if you are in debt there are no overnight solutions to your problem. Most debt counselors will tell you to make a budget and stick to it while not making any frivolous purchases. That may be of little comfort right now but in the long run with a little discipline you can come out on top.

  • Geebo 8:49 am on May 6, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    Off topic Friday: 10-year-old gets $10K from Facebook for hacking Instagram 

    Off topic Friday: 10-year-old gets $10K from Facebook for hacking Instagram

    Apparently this kid knows his code.

    A 10-year-old boy from Finland has become the youngest person to receive payment from Facebook’s bug bounty program. The program rewards individuals who can find vulnerabilities in Facebook without causing malice. The young man, known only as Jani, was able to find a flaw in the Facebook-owned Instagram where he was able to delete anyone’s comments without having an Instagram account. Facebook set up a test account for him to alter and he was able to do so with ease. In turn Facebook rewarded the boy with $19,000 for ethically showing them the flaw in Instagram. They say this particular reward was higher than normal since the flaw could have affected everyone on the photo sharing network.

    What were you doing when you were 10? Were you this advanced? When this blogger was ten the closest he got to a computer was his Atari game console. Or were you more of a 90’s kid obsessed with Pokemon? Or were you already on your way, like Jani, to being a computer whiz?

  • Geebo 9:56 am on May 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: movers   

    Why you shouldn’t hire the first mover you see 

    Why you shouldn't hire the first mover you see

    Recently a family from the Atlanta area in Georgia lost most of their possessions after hiring some movers they found online. The movers showed up in a rental van and they never made it to the family’s new house. Instead they made off with the family’s possessions and it turned out the truck was stolen as well.

    In order to avoid a situation like this you should always use a licensed mover. Ask around to your family and friends for recommendations or use review websites like Yelp to see what experience others have had with local movers. Lastly, if you fins a mover you like check with the Better Business Bureau to see if they have had any complaints against them.

    This may seem like a laborious procedure but in the long run it’s worth it.

  • Geebo 8:17 am on May 4, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    Don’t fall for fake customer support numbers 

    Don't fall for fake customer support numbers

    Having problems with your Facebook account? How about your GMail or Office 365? Surely giant corporations like Facebook, Google and Microsoft have customer service numbers that you can call. Actually, they don’t. Gone are the days when you could call just about any company up on the phone to try to get them to resolve your problem, especially tech companies. Behemoths like Facebook and Google have become such large global corporations offering free services that it is financially unfeasible for them to offer phone assistance. That hasn’t stopped some from trying to take advantage of that situation.

    If you were to go to your search engine of choice looking for these numbers you would definitely find some. However in many instances they are not legitimate numbers. Instead they are scam artists posing as these companies in order to take something valuable from you. They could be trying to access your GMail or Facebook accounts in order to steal personal information or they could be falsely charging you money to ‘fix’ whatever issue it is that you have.

    For the record, Geebo is very approachable and you can even Tweet at our CEO.

  • Geebo 7:26 am on May 3, 2016 Permalink | Reply
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    How to spot a scammer by their email address 

    How to spot a scammer by their email

    While no tip is guaranteed to be 100% accurate all the time here is a tip on how to spot a scammer by their email address.

    While scammers can use free email services like GMail or Yahoo a recent trend by overseas scammers is to use ‘off brand’ email addresses. A number of the addresses seem to have some kind of connection with the United Kingdom (UK) including proclaiming to be fans of a number of football teams (soccer) from the English Premier League. Another set of email addresses have various names of occupations or that they belong to some kind of car club.

    This is not to say that scammers won’t use free email services commonly used in the US. A good tip in that instance is to be wary addresses that seem to be a random string of characters rather than something that reflects a name. Also be wary of email addresses that have suffixes that indicate they’re from overseas such as .uk or .in for example.

    Again, no tip is guaranteed to be effective at all times but with a little bit of knowledge your online buying and selling experience can be a better one.

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