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  • Geebo 9:04 am on April 24, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: iPhone, , Long Island, rice,   

    LetGo users scammed into buying boxes of rice 

    LetGo users scammed into buying boxes of rice

    Most of us have heard the tip that when you accidentally drop your phone in water, you should then place it in a bag of rice. But what do you do when your phone is a bag of rice? That’s what happened recently to some users of the mobile marketplace app LetGo when they were trying to purchase iPhones.

    In Suffolk County in New York on Long Island, three people were arrested recently for selling iPhone boxes full of rice to people who thought they were buying the renowned smart phone through LetGo. The scammers allegedly claimed that they were selling brand new iPhones still in the box and factory sealed when in reality the boxes were filled with nothing but rice to simulate the weight of an iPhone and its accessories. When police investigated the residence where the operation was taking place, they reportedly found an industrial sealer, a heat gun, and a roll of clear plastic wrap among the packages of rice.

    If you’re buying something from a classifieds site or app always be skeptical of anything listed as sealed in box. As you can see, it doesn’t take much to reseal a box and there have been many stories over the years where people have been sold sealed boxes that have been filled with bricks, carpet samples, and many other bits of detritus. This is yet another reason to use safe exchange zones such as police stations to make your transactions. Not only do these zones go a long way in helping to protect your safety, but they also go a long way in preventing you from getting ripped off.

     
  • Geebo 10:00 am on January 11, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: iPhone,   

    Don’t buy a locked iPhone 

    Don't buy a locked iPhone

    Previously, we’ve discussed the inherent problems with buying an iPhone through a less than reputable site like craigslist. Whether it’s an old scam like wiring the money to a seller, or a new one like the cloned knock off iPhone, there is a minefield of traps you need to avoid when buying one of Apple’s most coveted products used.

    Recently, a man on Falls Church, Virginia, bought a used iPhone 8 off of craigslist and the phone seemed to pass all the tests in being a legitimate working iPhone. That was until he tried to activate the phone and found that the phone was blocked, or a more accurate term may be blacklisted. The phone was purchased through a payment plan with the phone’s carrier rather than being bought outright. The previous owner failed to make payments and when that happens the phone is immediately blacklisted and can not be activated ever.

    One of the things you can do to protect yourself is to try to activate the phone while the seller is there with you. Another is to check the IMEI or ESN numbers, a form of cell phone identification, with a number of websites that can check to see if the phone is blacklisted or not. Also, try using a more reputable site than craigslist. And as always, meet the seller at a police station. Not only does this go a long way in keeping you physically safe, but someone with a blocked phone may not be so willing to sell the phone where they can be recorded.

     
  • Geebo 10:08 am on December 6, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , iPhone, ,   

    Beware the phony iPhone X 

    Beware the phony iPhone X

    Since the iPhone X has been released it has been touted by some in the Apple ecosystem as the greatest cell phone ever invented, while others have said the iPhone 8 is an upgrade enough. However, if you find yourself in the market for an iPhone X, you should be on the lookout for phony knock off versions of the popular phone being sold online.

    One man in Chandler, Arizona, fell victim to one of these knock offs. He purchased the phone from someone on the OfferUp app. The seller had a good reputation on OfferUp which could possibly lead one to believe that seller reviews on OfferUp could be faked. The box was sealed, the package had a serial number and an IMEI number which was said to have been verified. The man paid under the list price of $1000 which should have been a tip-off. No one is selling an iPhone X at a loss. The scam became obvious when the man fired up the phone and an Android prompt greeted him. Android is the Google made operating system used by most phones that aren’t iPhones, while iPhones use Apple’s iOS. These knock off phones have been around even before the iPhone X was released.

    While OfferUp has removed the alleged seller from their app, what’s stopping them from creating a new account to start the scam all over again? As slick and glitzy as the OfferUp app might be it still seems to have the same old problems like the antiquated craigslist, rampant crime and scams galore. The more things change the more they stay the same.

     
  • Geebo 9:01 am on September 15, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , iPhone,   

    With new iPhones comes old scams 

    With new iPhones comes old scams

    It can hardly be argued that no company has a more loyal userbase than that of Apple. While the days of camping out in front of Apple stores may be a thing of the past, that doesn’t stop the devoted Apple fans from wanting to get their hands on Apple’s latest device as soon as possible and as cheaply as possible. This week, Apple unveiled a new line of iPhones in the iPhone 8 and the iPhone X, and whenever Apple unveils a new iPhone you can count on the scammers to try to take advantage of those who are trying to obtain one.

    The scams that involve iPhones aren’t new scams, just twists on the same old scams. Mostly it will be people trying to get you to wire money to someone through Western Union or Moneygram in order to get the phone. As always, we recommend never wiring money to someone you don’t know personally, otherwise the scammers run off with your money and there will be no iPhone in your future.

    Some red flags to be aware of are things that indicate the ad poster may be from overseas. They can be little things as posting the + symbol before a phone number, or specifying prices in USD. Another good indicator the poster may be from overseas is if they list their WhatsApp number, as WhatsApp is not as popular in the US as it is overseas. Also look out for severely lowered prices for new iPhones with an accompanying story that says something like “A relative bought me this phone but I already had one”.

    If you’re an Apple fan, it may be better to just be patient and stick out the wait until Apple’s supply of iPhones levels off, or even skipping a generation until the prices become more affordable.

     
  • Geebo 8:59 am on April 24, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , iPhone, Tim Cook, Travis Kalanick,   

    If you wanted another reason to delete Uber this may be it, as long as you don’t have an iPhone 

    If you wanted another reason to delete Uber this may be it, as long as you don't have an iPhone

    The problem with being the CEO of a controversial multi-billion dollar Silicon Valley startup is once controversy darkens your door it inevitably seems their business-related skeletons come crashing out of the closet, or boardroom as it may be. The New York Times has reported that Apple CEO Tim Cook accused Uber CEO Travis Kalanick of tracking iPhone users even after the Uber app was deleted from the device. In 2015, Cook was said to be so annoyed over the matter that he threatened to drop Uber from the Apple app store if they didn’t comply.

    This is just one more black eye to the company that was once heralded as being on the edge of ingenuity. From multiple sexual harassment accusations to lawsuits from Google over alleged stolen technology to the company allegedly taking advantage of their drivers. Uber has vehemently denied Apple’s accusation saying it wasn’t tracking iPhone users but were protecting themselves from people who would use stolen phones to try to get out of paying for expensive rides. Uber specifically has said this is mostly a problem in China.

    While Uber may seem like a morally ambiguous company at best, are any of these scandals really hurting their business? Do the everyday users of Uber know of the company’s many PR woes and if they do has it discouraged anyone from continuing to use the ride sharing app? So far competitors have failed to capitalize on Uber’s supposed downfall. Competing services like Lyft have started to make moves into formerly exclusive Uber markets but is Uber’s cache so great that their brand will be like the Xerox of their industry? Only time will tell.

     
  • Geebo 10:01 am on September 8, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , iPhone,   

    With a new iPhone new scams will appear 

    With a new iPhone new scams will appear

    As I’m sure you’ve heard, Apple announced the release of the iPhone 7 yesterday. They made headlines for dropping the standard headphone jack and including a proprietary set of earbuds that Apple calls EarPods, among other new features for the much-anticipated phone. Apple will start taking preorders tomorrow, while the sale of the new phones will take place on September 16th.

    On the first day of sales, it’s almost guaranteed that ads will pop up online promising great deals for the iPhone 7. With the price of the iPhone starting at $649 and topping off at $969 there will more than likely be online ads promising great deals. As always, if something sounds too good to be true it probably is. More than likely these ads will be trying to separate you from your money without having the payoff of receiving an iPhone. Remember, if someone asks you to wire them the payment, you’ll be out of your money and won’t be getting an iPhone.

    If you’re that much of an Apple devotee, your best bet is to get the phone the old-fashioned way. You can either keep refreshing your browser tonight until the preorders go live or camp out in line at the Apple store next week. Just as in life, there are no shortcuts to an iPhone.

     
  • Geebo 10:02 am on July 29, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , iPhone,   

    Apple sells billionth iPhone: Best product ever? 

    Apple sells billionth iPhone: Best product ever?

    Earlier this week, the little company that could from Cupertino, California, tech goliath Apple, announced that they had sold their billionth iPhone. To put that in perspective, Apple has sold more iPhones in the past 9 years than Sony has sold PlayStations since their debut in the late 90s, and has sold more iPhones than Rubik’s Cubes have been sold since the 80s. This has led some people to ask, is the iPhone, the best product ever?

    Before the advent of the iPhone, even the most sophisticated smart phones were rudimentary in their design and purpose. The biggest seller at the time, the Blackberry, had a small screen and a physical keyboard. For anyone that did not have a smart phone probably only had a flip phone that could only text message through the T9 way of texting. Now we live in a world where most of us can’t imagine not having our smart phones within arm’s reach. Without Apple developing the iPhone there’s no reason for Google to try to develop the Android operating system in order to compete with Apple and without Android smart phones would not be as affordable as they have become in the past decade. A reasonably well-functioning smart phone can now be purchased for less than a $100. What really launched the iPhone into the proverbial stratosphere was the development of its app store. Because of that we have had brand new economies and business built solely around apps.

    While it’s no cure for polio, in the grand scheme of things, the iPhone can’t be denied its profound impact in the shaping of our current culture.

     
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