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  • Geebo 8:00 am on June 18, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , military, , , ,   

    Rental scammer posed as military member 

    Rental scammer posed as military member

    Rental scammers are always looking for new excuses to give their victims as to why they can’t meet them face to face. Most recently, rental scammers used the excuse of social distancing to explain their reluctance to meet. In the past, a popular excuse with scammers was that they claimed to be working overseas on a religious mission. All the excuses are used to achieve the same effect. They do this to try to avoid suspicion in the fact that they don’t have the authority to rent the property they claim to own and to get you to make a payment sight unseen. One of the classic excuses seems to be making a comeback and that’s the scammers posing as members of the military.

    San Diego, California is a huge military town, especially for naval forces. The city has seven military bases mostly for the Navy and Marines with a single Coast Guard base. Scammers will try to use the city’s relationship with the military to their advantage. Unfortunately, it worked against one family in San Diego who were looking for a new place to live. They had found a listing on craigslist that appeared to be a really good deal. The person who claimed to own the property also claimed that they were stationed overseas with the Navy. The family wired $1600 to the scammer before they found out the listing was a fake. The scammers had even used the picture of a real serviceman who passed away a few years ago. This scam isn’t limited to just military towns as it has been used all over the country.

    If a prospective landlord ever says that they can’t meet you in person for whatever reason, it’s almost assuredly a scam. Also, if the landlord requests payment through unconventional means like wire transfer or gift cards, it is also almost assuredly a scam. If they claim to be currently overseas for whatever reason, they are almost assuredly a scammer.

    While you may be in a rush to find a new home it’s always worth taking the time to research the property. You should always do a reverse image search to make sure the property ad isn’t being copied from a legitimate realtor or landlord. Lastly, you should also check with the county’s tax assessor’s office or website to find out who the true property owner is. This research may take some time but in the end, it’s worth it to avoid finding yourself in a situation like this.

     
  • Geebo 8:00 am on May 13, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: military, , ,   

    The other victims of romance scams 

    The other victims of romance scams

    When we’ve discussed romance scams in the past, we usually focus on the victims who have lost money. However, there are other victims of the scam that we may not have considered.

    If you’re unfamiliar with romance scams, they also go by the name catfishing. A scammer will set up a phony social media or dating profile. They’ll then approach a victim online like they’re seeking a romantic relationship. They might string the victim along for weeks or months. They’ll often give excuses as to why they can’t meet in person, usually business-related but not always. Eventually, they’ll approach their victim for money. A lot of the time the scammers will claim they’re stuck in some remote location and need the money to get home. Other times they’ll say it’s for a business venture that could make the victim rich. Sometime they’ll even flat out ask for gifts.

    This scam is prevalent among the military. Not as financial victims, but as the ones having their pictures stolen to be used on the scammers’ fake accounts. Scammers prefer using the pictures of military members as it gives them a built-in excuse as to why they may be overseas or unable to meet in person. Sadly, these military members are victims too as they often find themselves being sought out by the financial victims of the scam.

    For example, a Naval Petty Officer stationed in Virginia says that he receives several messages a day from victims of a romance scam that used his picture. Too often the victims believe that the person in the picture is the actual scammer. He says that he even had victims go after his girlfriend online. In some cases, he says, victims will even physically track down the military member used in the picture.

    We’re sure we don’t have to instruct military members on how to conduct themselves on social media because they’re probably given guidelines for that all the time. However, if you want to protect yourself or someone you know from one of these scams, one of the best things you can do is a reverse image search. This will allow you to see if the picture being sent is one being used somewhere else online under a different name.

     
  • Geebo 9:00 am on December 16, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , military, military death,   

    Scam call frightens military family 

    Scam call frightens military family

    We’ve talked about some pretty underhanded scams in the past few years. Nothing seems to be lower than the virtual kidnapping scam where scammers try to convince you that one of your children has been kidnapped. There’s also the grandparent scam where scammers try to fool the elderly into giving them money by posing as one of their grandchildren in trouble. I think we can all agree that one group of people that should be immune from scams are those with family in the military. While these brave men and women are defending our country, they shouldn’t have to worry about their loved ones being scammed out of their savings or having their identity stolen.

    Recently, a man in North Dakota received a phone call telling him that his Marine son was killed on active duty. The scammers told the man that his son had died during live-fire practice. They then asked the man where he’d like to have his son’s remains shipped to before eventually asking for the man’s Social Security number. It wasn’t until after the man hung up that he realized he had been scammed. He was eventually able to reach his son who was fine. The man then took several steps to try to make sure his identity won’t be stolen.

    If the unthinkable were to happen and a service member is killed during active duty, a member of that branch of the military will personally visit the primary next of kin to inform them. Phone calls should only be received after a member of the military pays a personal visit to the family’s home. There have even been scams where people dressed in military uniforms have gone to people’s houses telling them that a service member in their family had died. So even if someone shows up to your home, you may want to make some phone calls first to confirm the news.

     
  • Geebo 8:00 am on October 2, 2019 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , military, ,   

    Malware attack targets veterans 

    Malware attack targets veterans

    Most online scams and attacks tend to target vulnerable groups of people such as the elderly, low-income families, and those in desperate need of a home. This new attack is no different, however, it’s targeting a group of people who have not only served their country but often find themselves needing resources more so than many other members of society. We’re of course talking about military veterans. Some of them are dealing with enough problems without having to deal with scammers and other bad actors but unfortunately, there are always people looking to take advantage of a bad situation.

    A number of internet security firms have reported that there is a malware attack floating around that targets veterans who are looking for employment. The veterans are lured to a site that resembles one run by the US Chamber of Commerce that is supposed to help veterans find work. Instead, this phony website infects the user’s computer with malware that is designed to steal personal that’s kept on the device. While it has not been determined what specific information is being stolen one can imagine the myriad of scams that information could be used for especially when it concerns someone who may be receiving government benefits or assistance. Sadly, this isn’t the only scam that targets veterans.

    Another scam that veterans should be on the lookout for is the benefit buyout scam as shown in the video above. There are also scams promising refinancing on VA loans with bogus promises of low rates along with phishing attacks from phony emails that appear to be from the VA. That’s in addition to employment scams that are identical to the ones civilians fall prey to but in this case, they are specifically targeted at vets. If an offer sounds too good to be true it is recommended that you check with your local VA office for additional information.

     
  • Geebo 9:11 am on April 17, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , military,   

    Fake Facebook profiles a problem for the military 

    Fake Facebook profiles a problem for the military

    One of the other issues discussed with Mark Zuckerberg by Congress was not just that of privacy, but that of identity theft. US Representative Adam Kinzinger from Illinois, mentioned to Zuckerberg that the Congressman had his own information stolen by scammers who had created fake profiles in order to extort money from victims. According to CBS Marketwatch, this is not a new problem on Facebook and often targets members of the military to steal their identity.

    Members of the military often have their profiles copied to make fake Facebook profiles by overseas scammers. The scammers then use the fake profiles to try to get someone romantically interested in the fake profile. This is hen usually followed up by some request for money from the victim. These scams have claimed anywhere from hundreds to millions of dollars from victims, and it’s believed the crime is underreported due to the number of victims who are too embarrassed to come forward.

    Facebook is usually not a big help when it comes to these fake profiles. When the military reports these profiles, Facebook will have them removed, but then they’ll just pop right back up soon after. As in the video shown above, the serviceman whose profile was copied again and again couldn’t get the fakes removed due to Facebook claiming that the fake profiles did not violate their ever-vague ‘community guidelines’.

    Now you may be savvy enough to not fall for such a scam, but think of all your friends on Facebook who may not be. If they’re suddenly head over heels for someone in the military they’ve met online, warn them that this may be a scam, especially if they ask for money. As a military spokesperson put it to CBS…

    Members of the military shouldn’t be asking for money, said Heusdens. “If they say they need help paying for a medical bill, the military pays for medical treatment for soldiers,” she said. Likewise, asking for help to buy food is a red flag.

    “We get fed very well,” she said.

     
  • Geebo 10:00 am on June 27, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , military, telescope   

    Find of the Week: Korean War Era Military Reflecting Telescope 

    Find of the Week: Korean War Era Military Reflecting Telescope

    In case you missed the post on any of our social networking accounts, yesterday we promoted an ad for a most intriguing item. A seller in Lompoc, California, posted an ad for a 12″ military reflecting telescope that is said to date back to the Korean War.

    According to the seller…

    This Telescope was originally used at the end of the Korean War and in all of the Vietnam War for spotting high-flying enemy aircraft and was phased out as computer controlled radar aiming was phased in. The telescope casing is 12″ diameter And roughly 15″ long.

    This collector’s item could not only be a great purchase for military collectors but also for history and science buffs as well.

     
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