[Masthead] Mostly Cloudy ~ 79°F  
Heat Advisory
Saturday, Aug. 23, 2014

Scams and schemes

Posted Tuesday, March 22, 2011, at 11:25 AM

There are so many different con games, scams and fraudulent emails, mailings, phone calls and Facebook posts that it's really hard to keep track of them all or to keep everyone informed. But I wanted to pass a couple along.

I got an email early this morning from Betsy, a woman who used to work for a non-profit in which I've been active. She was stuck in London, her cash had been stolen, and she needed one of her friends to wire her some money in order to get back to the U.S.

Something about the email just didn't sound like Betsy, and so I googled the phone number she left in the email and discovered that it was a scam. Someone had hacked Betsy's email account. The exact same email, worded the same way, goes out countless times every day from various hacked email accounts. It gets your attention because it seems to be coming from someone you know. I don't know what would happen if you actually dialed the phone number; they'd probably claim to be a friend of Betsy's, say that Betsy was unavailable, but give you the information for wiring her the funds.

Then, a few hours later, I ran across a different scam, outlined at

http://www.walletpop.com/2011/03/15/call...

and also at

http://www.snopes.com/inboxer/scams/forw...

In this one, the victim gets a call from someone asking for emergency help and giving a phone number which needs to be called starting with *72. The extra digits may be explained by saying it's a special law enforcement number, or a foreign number, or what have you.

The fact is, *72 isn't part of any phone number; it's the code to turn on call forwarding. The rest of the digits the caller gives the victim are the number to which all the victim's calls will be forwarded until the service has been turned off. The scam artist can then receive collect calls, and the poor victim will get the bill for them.

If this happens to you, and you dial *72, you can turn call-forwarding back off by dialing *73.

There are plenty more scams and schemes out there. Don't hesitate to look up mysterious phone numbers or appeals online before you respond to them.


Comments
Showing comments in chronological order
[Show most recent comments first]

I have heard about the money wiring scams and the call forwarding scam from the BBB when they were on Channel 5+. As for the call forwarding, they stated that sometimes the call will be from a jail or prison and once you accept the call, then the inmate claims to have dialed the wrong number and get you to call the other number and you end up being tricked into part of a call forwarding scheme.

But as for the hacking of email addresses, I would recommend people to change their passwords every few months. I do this on all of my email accounts. And combine numbers, letters, capital letters and (if the site allows) punctuation. Also, do not keep a file stored on your PC with passwords in it. Keep your passwords on a notepad or something physical so hackers cannot get a hold of them. Also, you can click the button "Sent" in your account in Yahoo and it will tell you if any emails have been sent from your account. This is an early sign if anyone has been using your account.

-- Posted by PrpleHze on Tue, Mar 22, 2011, at 1:56 PM

Yesterday Kim Komando reported that a "team of specialists may have permanently knocked out the world's worst spammer."

I have always wanted to send something back to spammers (and scammers) to destroy their network. If they could make that system available to all of us maybe we could shut them all down.

-- Posted by stevemills on Tue, Mar 22, 2011, at 8:14 PM

Microsoft was one of the main ones that took them down.

-- Posted by Evil Monkey on Wed, Mar 23, 2011, at 3:43 AM

I guess that is why we pay them the big bucks.

-- Posted by stevemills on Wed, Mar 23, 2011, at 8:09 PM

joann Holland is a scam along with her friends.The reason they are trying to get rid of our new City manager is because he is Honest.The men Understand Mr Dill is running the City as it should be without playing favorites or taking bribes,but the gils want the old way. Now that is a real scam right here in our Town of shelbyville.

-- Posted by washington on Thu, Mar 24, 2011, at 7:52 AM

We had a Facebook account taken over by this scam, it took our email and change two letters in ( to someone who knows us it looked the same) then sent emails to a lot of the people in our contact list. We had to go through Facebook to have the account closed since we could no longer access it, and had to explain to a lot of people that no we did not get to go to the United Kingdom. I don't understand how they got our contact list without getting into the actual email. Grrrrr!!! It took a couple days and lots of digging to get it cleared up. Nothing horrible happened but we were able to catch it within a couple of hours of them doing it.

-- Posted by wonderwhy on Sun, Mar 27, 2011, at 6:09 PM

WOW!

-- Posted by airforce one on Thu, Mar 31, 2011, at 9:50 AM

Got that right Washington old way's nothing new that's Shelbyville.

-- Posted by airforce one on Thu, Mar 31, 2011, at 9:53 AM

Got that right Washington old way's nothing new that's Shelbyville.

-- Posted by airforce one on Thu, Mar 31, 2011, at 9:55 AM

I see Shelbyville at it againe same old bull with Mr. Lander's and Mr. Williams in witch Mr. Meeks started the Recyling thang and no one one would to act on it takes six months for them to do any thing now they want to drive Mr.Doller out so they can add some money to there pocketts they never come up with there own ideas of corse small Braines dont.

And as far as Mr. Roy Cunningham saying any thing he was and has been a pain in the back side he was on the city council and never said a thang abought Recyling all the year's while he was there

and bears most of what is wrong with Shelbyville

a long with others that is still on city council

And as far as how to make money for the city they all dont have a clue.

One more thang they still have not stop police cars going home with officers thats spending money nor the dog catcher takeing home the dog truck,nor have they stoped feeding the city council there free lunches nor made them give up there cell phones they will never learn how to save money thats why i say we need to go Metro type of Goverment and form a watch dog over all Goverment.

-- Posted by airforce one on Wed, Apr 20, 2011, at 1:08 AM


Respond to this blog

Posting a comment requires free registration. If you already have an account, enter your username and password below. Otherwise, click here to register.

Username:

Password:  (Forgot your password?)

Your comments:
Please be respectful of others and try to stay on topic.


Notes from the Newsroom
John I. Carney
Recent posts
Archives
Blog RSS feed [Feed icon]
Comments RSS feed [Feed icon]
Login
John I. Carney is city editor of the Times-Gazette.
Hot topics
Remembering Robin
(4 ~ 3:13 PM, Aug 14)

Once an alum, always an alum
(1 ~ 9:25 AM, Jul 26)

'John: Pardon my dumb ass.'
(2 ~ 8:58 AM, Jul 14)

Watch this, you hockey puck!
(1 ~ 12:22 PM, May 29)

The Quiet Man
(4 ~ 6:18 PM, Mar 19)