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  • Geebo 8:00 am on June 19, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: lottery scam, , Publishers Clearing House, , sweepstakes   

    Sweepstakes scammers show up at man’s door 

    Sweepstakes scammers show up at man's door

    Usually, today’s scammers like to be as far away from their victims as possible. Between the internet and cheap phone rates, scammers can target just about anyone anywhere around the globe. However, every once in awhile a scammer will take it to the next level to try to fool their victim.

    That happened to a man in New Jersey recently. Scammers targeted him in a sweepstakes or lottery scam. The way the scam normally works is scammers will contact random people to tell them that they’ve won a great deal of money in a contest that they didn’t actually enter. The scammers will then say that the ‘winner’ has to either pay taxes or some kind of transfer fee on their winnings before they can collect it. Even if the victim pays there are no winnings and the victim is usually out thousands of dollars.

    The scammers in this case posed as the most famous sweepstakes in America, the Publishers Clearing House sweepstakes. We’ve all seen the commercials over the years of PCH delivering oversized novelty checks to their winners. The scammers, in this case, called the man repeatedly to tell him that he had won one of their renowned prizes. They told him a representative would show up at his door with the prize. A woman actually showed up to his home claiming to be from PCH and was said to be holding a bouquet of flowers to make the illusion seem more authentic. Thankfully, the man was on to the scam and threatened to call the police if they did not leave his property. The woman got into a waiting car and left.

    No legitimate sweepstakes or lottery will ask you for tax money or fees in advance if you win as that is illegal in the United States. There’s also no such thing as winning a contest that you didn’t even enter.

    While we all dream of winning a giant jackpot to relieve our financial woes, don’t let the dream cloud your common sense.

     
  • Geebo 8:00 am on June 16, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , lottery scam,   

    Scammers pose as the BBB 

    Scammers pose as the BBB

    The main weapon in the scammer’s arsenal is their ability to pose as almost anyone. In the past scammers have posed as potential buyers, potential sellers, employers, kidnappers, police, and imprisoned grandchildren just to name a few. One scammer is even said to have posed as the current US Secretary of the Treasury in order to steal people’s identities under the guise of assisting with economic impact payments. The one organization we never heard about scammers posing as was the one organization that does the most to try to protect consumers against scams. That was until now.

    According to Wikipedia, the Better Business Bureau is a private nonprofit organization whose purpose is to focus on advancing marketplace trust. To that aim, they’ve become one of the leading national authorities in most types of commercial scams. Their scam tracker tool not only lets you know when a scam is happening in your area but it allows you to report scams as well.

    Imagine the BBB’s surprise when they received word that their name had been used in a scam. An elderly man in San Jose, California lost $45,000 to a lottery scam. The scammers had called him claiming to be from the Better Business Bureau and told the man that he had won a ‘mega lottery’. The scammers then kept getting the man to pay thousands of dollars in fake taxes and various fraudulent fees before he could claim his prize.

    After becoming impatient with not receiving his prize, the man contacted the BBB wondering where the lottery payout was. This is when he discovered that the BBB was not trying to collect money from him and that the whole thing was a scam.

    Remember, that anyone online or calling and texting you can say they’re whoever they want you to believe they are. Also, when it comes to lotteries and sweepstakes, no one ever gets picked at random for a contest that they never entered. Not only that, but it is illegal in the United States for anyone to try to make you pay before claiming any winnings. That’s why commercial sweepstakes always mention that no purchase is necessary.

     
  • Geebo 8:25 am on April 10, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , lottery scam, , ,   

    Kidnapping scams, among others, continue 

    Kidnapping scams, among others, continue

    For the past few weeks, we’ve been discussing scams that have been related to the coronavirus pandemic whether it’s directly or indirectly. While fears surrounding the pandemic have been a boon to many con artists, some are still running the same old scams without using coronavirus as a tool in their arsenal.

    In Denver, the police have been receiving complaints about kidnapping scams taking place. This is when a scammer will call a victim and tell them that they’ve kidnapped a loved one. The scammers will then demand a ransom either through wire transfer, gift cards or other hard to trace payment options. The trick to this scam is that nobody has been actually kidnapped and the scammers are hoping the fear generated in the situation will cause the victim to pay the phony ransom. Often, these scammers are able to find the names of their pretend victims through social media making the threatening call more convincing. If you ever receive one of these phone calls, always get someone you trust to call the suspected victim while you keep the virtual kidnappers on the phone. In any case, you should always contact the police if you find yourself in the midst of this scam.

    Two Chicago men were arrested in Boise, Idaho accused of a social media scam that cost victims thousands of dollars. The two men would allegedly take to social media and post the message “Who ready to get paid today? Text CASH NOW to [phone number redacted.] It’s legit… tell them I referred you.” Victims were said to be persuaded to hand over their debit card information including their PIN. Instead of getting paid, the two men would deposit phony checks into the victims’ accounts then withdraw the money before the bank would realize the checks were fake.

    In Kentucky, scammers are posing as the state Lottery Commission and telling victims that they have won large prizes. The scammers will then either ask for ‘taxes’ on the prize or they’ll ask for bank information to send the phony prize. In either case, the victims end up losing money before it’s all over/. Keep in mind that when you purchase a lottery ticket you never give your contact information to the point of purchase so the Lottery Commission has no way of contacting you.

    While these scams may bot be happening in your area now, it could only be a matter of time before they are.

     
  • Geebo 9:00 am on December 10, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , lottery scam,   

    You can’t win a sweepstakes you never entered 

    You can't win a sweepstakes you never entered

    It’s time again for more scams that are happening around the country.

    In Iowa, authorities are warning residents who receive a letter from the “North America Consumer Promotion Draw.” The letter states that you’ve won some kind of sweepstakes prize and that you should call one of their agents so you can claim your prize. Of course, in order to claim your winnings, you have to pay a $1,000 processing and insurance fee. Instead of claiming any prizes, you’ll just be out of a grand. By and large, random people don’t get entered into giveaways that they haven’t entered themselves, and legitimate sweepstakes won’t ask you to pay a fee to claim your prize.

    In Wisconsin, a man fell victim to the bank texting scam. The man received a text from a scammer posing as his bank stating that there was fraudulent activity on his account. When the man texted back that those transactions weren’t him he received an automated phone call asking for his account’s PIN. Once he provided his PIN an actual fraudulent charge was made to his debit card for $500. If you receive any kind of notification stating that there’s a problem with your bank account, contact your bank directly. Don’t use the number that the text number may have provided and never give your PIN unless you’re absolutely sure you’re talking to your bank.

    Lastly, a Sheriff’s Office in Kentucky is warning local businesses about a gift card scam targeting their employees. A number of people have received emails posing as their bosses asking the employees to go out and buy gift cards. Once the gift cards were purchased the employees were instructed to send pictures of the gift card PINs through text message. If you receive an email like this, always verify with the person who is supposedly sending the email. If in doubt, call the person who sent the request to make sure you’re not falling victim to a scam.

    Please keep in mind that any number of these scams could be coming to your area at any time.

     
  • Geebo 9:00 am on November 12, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Jamaica, lottery scam,   

    Victim fights back in lottery scam 

    Victim fights back in lottery scam

    A 90-year-old woman from a small town in North Dakota was taken for $400,000 in a foreign lottery scam. A scammer called the woman to tell her that she had won millions of dollars in a lottery. The catch was that she would have to pay advance fees in order to claim the winnings. This woman ended up paying $400,000 to scammers by sending them checks, cashing out a life insurance policy, and even borrowing money from family members. The woman’s children were finally able to discover what was happening and explained to the woman what was really going on.

    The victim, in this case, didn’t take the losses lying down and helped launch a federal investigation into this particular scam. Federal investigators have been able to apprehend 31 suspects allegedly involved in the scam. Most of the suspects were captured in the United States but a number of them were extradited from Jamaica. It’s believed this scam ring was able to bilk its elderly victims out of $6 million. While federal prosecutors have pledged to get the woman’s money back, so far she’s only been able to collect $287 out of the $400,000 she lost.

    With most scams, if something sounds too good to be true it probably is. Even if you play your state lottery the lottery commission isn’t going to call you by phone. In that case, you need to contact them to claim any winnings if there over a certain amount. While you may be in a desperate situation where the money would be a welcome relief, take a moment to think about wahts’ going on. Why would someone call you to give you money for a lottery that you didn’t even enter? There are no mystery lotteries giving out money to random winners. While it may sound like a gift from above, it’s actually a deal with the devil.

     
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