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  • Geebo 9:00 am on November 17, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: inmate scam, , parole scam, ,   

    Scam Round Up: Lost pet scam and more 

    Scam Round Up: Lost pet scam and more

    By Greg Collier

    Our first story is a reminder about the shut-off scam. With the cold weather starting to descend on the country, shut-off scammers have ramped up their efforts. It’s gotten to the point where several major utility companies across the nation have warned their customers about it.

    The shut-off scam is when the scammers pose as your local utility company and threaten to shut off your service that day without an immediate payment. When the temperature drops, this can become a matter of survival for many, so they end up paying the scammers.

    Utility providers, such as electricity and gas companies, refrain from contacting customers directly and provide only a day’s notice before discontinuing services—a clear warning sign. Normally, these companies issue multiple warnings via mail before service termination. Additionally, legitimate utility companies never request payments in the form of gift cards, cryptocurrency, or through payment apps like Zelle and Venmo.


    Another scam that is targeting families with incarcerated loved ones involves fraudulent calls claiming to be from the Georgia Parole Board. Families have reported scammers requesting money for the release of their family member, asserting that funds are needed for an ankle monitor before the inmate can be released.

    One family recently lost $2300 to scammers thinking their son was being paroled. They paid the scammer through Cash App. Like police departments, parole boards will never ask for money, and especially not through Cash App.

    The Georgia Parole Board has issued a warning, emphasizing that they never make calls to families soliciting money. Residents of Georgia are urged to verify the current parole status of their family member by checking the official parole board website before taking any action.


    A woman from Tucson, Arizona, was warning her community after she lost her cat. Scammers called her posing as her local animal shelter. The scammers told her they had her cat, but she would need to pay to get her cat back. Then they told her that their computers were down, and they would send her a link where she would need to pay.

    Thankfully, she was suspicious and called her local shelter, who informed her they did not have her cat and the caller was a scammer.

    Ensure the safety of your pet by following these crucial steps. First and foremost, take your pet to the veterinarian to have them microchipped, which significantly enhances the chances of reuniting with them if they happen to wander off. When creating fliers or social media posts to find your lost pet, it’s wise to use your email address instead of your phone number to avoid potential exposure to scammers seeking to exploit your personal information. If someone claims to have found your pet, request a photograph as proof. Exercise caution if they then ask for money transfers or gift cards, as this is a clear indication of a scam attempt.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on May 3, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , inmate scam, , , , ,   

    Scam Round Up: AI voice scam finds another victim and more 

    By Greg Collier

    This week in the round-up, we’ll be discussing three scams we’ve discussed before, but have popped up again recently.

    Our first scam is the Medicare card scam. Medicare issued new cards back in 2018 which started using an ID# rather than the recipient’s Social Security number. This was done to help prevent Medicare fraud and ensure patient privacy. Ever since then, scammers have been trying to fool Medicare recipients into believing another new card was being issued. Scammers typically do this to try to steal their victim’s Medicare information.

    The West Virginia Attorney General’s Office has issued a warning which says scammers are calling residents posing as Medicare, the Social Security Administration, or the Department of Insurance. The scammers are telling residents they need to turn in their paper Medicare cards for new plastic ones. This is not true. If Medicare were to issue new cards, they would announce it through the mail and not by calling Medicare recipients.

    The next scam pertains to families who have a loved one who is currently incarcerated. The Georgia Parole Board has issued their own warning to the families of the incarnated. They’ve reported scammers are calling the families and asking for money for the release of their family member. The scammers claim the money is needed for an ankle monitor before the inmate could be released.

    According to the parole board, they will never call anyone’s family asking for money. Georgia residents are advised to check with the parole board’s website before to determine the current parole status of their family member.

    Our final scam is one that’s not that old and has been in the news a lot lately, the voice spoofing scam. Scammers are taking voice recordings from social media or spam phone calls and feeding it to an AI program that can replicate that person’s voice. So far, it’s mostly been used in the grandparent scam, and the virtual kidnapping scam.

    An elderly coupe from Texas fell victim to the grandparent scam when they heard the voice of their grandson asking for help. The AI-generated voice said they were in an accident in Mexico and needed $1000. Believing he was talking to his actual grandson, the grandfather sent the money.

    If you receive a call like this, don’t believe your ears, as they can be deceived. Instead, try to contact the person who is supposedly in danger before sending any money.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on September 20, 2022 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , inmate scam, , , , , , ,   

    Scam Round Up: New scam targets veterans and more 

    Scam Round Up: New scam targets veterans and more

    By Greg Collier

    This week in the Round Up, we’re bringing you three scams that might not be affecting you now, but you should be aware of.


    Our first scam has to be more than distressing to its victims. Scammers are targeting the families of inmates who are incarcerated in a county jail in Alabama. The scammers are posing as jail employees, telling the families that their family member has died in custody, when it isn’t true.

    From what we’ve researched, this is not a common scam, but has happened before. However, we couldn’t find any information on what the scam is hoping to achieve, since the scammers have not asked for any kind of payment. If we had to hazard a guess, we’d say this might be some kind of identity theft ploy.

    According to the local sheriff’s department, if an inmate were to die in custody, the family would be informed by the coroner’s office. If you have a family member who is incarcerated, you may want to find out what the procedure is for that jurisdiction.

    Sadly, this is not the only scam the family’s of inmates have to worry about. They are often targeted by scammers who promise their family member better privileges or an early release. These scams often ask for money. Someone receiving these offers should always check with the institution first to see if these programs are actually available, and should never give anyone their personal information over the phone.


    It always seems like social media has a never-ending stream of scams to deal with. It also seems that the short-form video platform TikTok is no exception. Lately, they’ve been dealing with a string of videos where scammers claim they can help you make a profit investing in cryptocurrency.

    The videos usually have someone flaunting stacks of cash or other signs of wealth while promising to make the viewer money. However, this is just a variation of the money flipping scam that has plagued Instagram. The scammers will promise they can get viewers thousands of dollars if they just send the scammer a few hundred.

    The scammers end up keeping the money sent to them and often ask victims for more money using promises of returning even more profit to the victim.

    Cryptocurrency on its own is already flush with scammers. Unless you know the cryptocurrency market intimately and can afford to lose an investment, you shouldn’t let other people invest in it for you, especially people you don’t know personally.


    Recently, an act was passed into law that allows U.S. veterans and their family to sue the government if they were exposed to toxic burn pits at military bases. The Better Business Bureau is reporting that scammers are using this new law to their advantage by promising veterans and their families they can sue the government for them. Once they get the veteran’s money and information, the scammers disappear.

    Another scam targeting veterans is one where the scammers are posing as Veterans Affairs. Again, the scammers are after the veteran’s personal information for identity theft purposes.

    The VA recommends that if you received unsolicited communication from someone claiming to be from the VA, you should contact the VA through their website. You can also find if you’re eligible under the new law here.

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