AMAZON shoppers are being warned of a refund scam that sees hackers pretend to be employees.
The warning comes after an elderly couple from Louisiana reportedly lost $60,000 of savings from their bank account via an internet fraudster.
According to Crowley Police Chief Jimmy Broussard, the pair were contacted online by an alleged Amazon agent – who claimed that they had been hacked.
“The hacker was able to hack into their bank account, take the 60 thousand out of their savings and put it into their checking,” he explained. They were not aware of it until the second time, and they contacted their bank. The hacker reportedly claimed to send the wrong amount of money, causing the couple to send money to the agent through the mail. The individual then pleaded with the vulnerable couple that he would be fired if the so-called mistake was not rectified – adding that they deposit the cash immediately.
To conclude they were then issued with a fake arrest warrant from Louisiana State Police via email – which accused them of money laundering.
ATLANTA (CBS46) — A Kennesaw couple building their retirement home in the North Georgia mountains were recently scammed out of $17K. Better Call Harry explains how it happened. Craig Seabolt and his wife didn’t think twice about an email that turned out to be a scam.
The couple are building a lakefront retirement home in Blairsville. Not long after groundbreaking, the first $17,000 payment was due. The Seabolts mailed a check to their builder. A few days later they received an email that said that the bank was having a problem processing the check. The email contained wire instructions.
Seabolt’s wife sent the money without asking any questions because she believed it came from their builder. A month later when the scammers made another wire request, Seabolt started asking questions.
The FBI was able to track the wire transfer to St. Petersburg, Russia, but the money is gone.
There were clues in the emails, including a grammatical error and spelling error.
The builder was able to fix their account and the home will be done early next year. However, the Seabolts want others to know that if you receive an email that appear to be from someone you know but they ask for something unusual, you should check it out before taking action.
Scammers send you a text message that appears to be from a well-known chain store offering a free product, discount or gift card to anyone who completes a survey, according to a news release by the BBB. Many of them state that it is a limited-time offer so you’ll need to act fast if you want to receive your gift, the BBB says.
Elderly Fenton man a victim of phone scam:-
Out $2,500 to unknown caller who claimed he was trying to help resident whose computer had been hacked
An 86-year-old Fenton man reported to Fenton police that he had been scammed out of $2,500. The man told police that someone had called his phone and told him that his computer had been hacked and that he needed to send the caller $4,500 in Apple gift cards so that he could retrieve the personal information from his computer.
Every scammer has its unique knack of trapping their victims. Yet there are some basic factors which are common in all the scammers. One needs to be very cautious in noticing those and acting accordingly.
Most common traits of a scammer:
They will contact you unexpectedly claiming from a company or a person you have never heard of, especially from the U.S, U.K, Canada and Western Europe.
The only contact details they provide is their email address, phone number and post-office box address.
They are from non-educational background which makes their English a laughable matter.
Incomplete and rambling sentences with bad grammar, misspellings and wrong references are used by poorly trained and inexperienced scammers.
They will repeatedly ask many personal questions.
They will mostly try to gain your sympathy by cooking up sad stories, like say, a widower raising a kid alone, a heart-broken lover recovering from love failure, etc.
You will be asked to exchange email ids in few messages to avoid getting caught from the security of dating sites.
Scammers on dating sites will try to trick you by saying that they have fallen in love with you.
Gets too desperate for a relationship, send love letters and marriage proposals very often.
They will plead you to assist them by sending funds for an operation or other administration stuffs or for their coaching classes.
For verification purpose, they even forge official documents and send a copy to your email address.
The fraudster will force you to make a quick decision based on a build up situation to transfer money to their account.
Speaking of their victims, there is no particular age group they usually target on. Cheaters are increasingly making attempts to lure young people – from adolescents to college students. Reason being, they do not take necessary precautions to protect themselves while using a computer or smart phone. Elderly people become victims due to ignorance to their ways of tricking them into handing over personal and financial information.
Here are some of the most common traits of a victim:
People, who lack self-control, self-confidence and are easily persuaded by any third person fall for such scams.
People, who do not indulge themselves in carrying out any background checks, ask questions or verify with BBB before entering into a contract or handling over your money.
People, who do not follow strong password protection methods for their various accounts and documents, are targeted by the fraudsters.
In many instances, people who are most susceptible by threatening phone calls, fake lotteries from unknown sources, fake sweepstakes and investment scams are hunted by the cheaters.
Many get excited by fake advertisement pop-ups and instantly click on the link or even in some situations download a corrupted file in the link. They can even acquire your personal information just by making you open their mails and sign up for trial offers.
Steps to be taken to protect yourself from getting duped:
On receiving any mails or phone calls from uninvited contacts, always consider the possibility that the approach may be a scam. Be alert to the concept of scam and its methods.
Incorporate the habit of setting different passwords for various accounts that contain sensitive information. This will help you to keep your information secure.
Avoid too-good-to-be-true category popup windows and suspicious mails from unknown sources.
The biggest mistake one does while entering into any deal is to overlook the terms and conditions section of the contract. Never sign up for a contract without having an in-depth knowledge about the terms and conditions of the contract.
Never send your credit card details or account information to people whom you don’t know. They may try to convince you by being polite and generous. But do not send any money unless you are confirmed that he can be trusted.
Try to get into the details of the reasons they are giving to get money from you. If it is for an operation, get to know about the hospital where they will be operated, the doctor, etc.
Browse the web for further details about the person who you are dealing with.
Avoid chatting offline and use the services of the website where you first met that person.
Be realistic and do not believe on offers or deals straight away; tell the person you are not interested or that you want to seek expert’s advice before making a decision.
Be careful when you shop online especially when using virtual currencies like bitcoins.