Some Scam Alerts From Our Readers

A few weeks ago we asked our readers to send us tales of scams that they had experienced or heard about.  We were pretty amazed at the response.  Thanks for sending all these in.

If you would, please send this along to your friends so that they can be warned too.

The Jewelry Scam From Shirley:

“I have one for you. I received a postcard telling me I would be given Necklace worth $50 for  FREE  and all I would have to do is pay the $8.95 shipping cost.  I was to call a phone number to get the information. When I called I was told it was from a jeweler who considered me a good customer and described the necklace as Pearl with real red gems on it. I as to give them a credit card # to pay the shipping. This raised a red flag in me. They would accept a check if I gave my check bank number to them, I asked to give the money direct to the jeweler and they wouldn’t name the jeweler. So I told them I wasn’t interested under those conditions.  Then I emailed two jewelers I had purchased some jewelry from: Stauer, and Natures Jewelry and asked if they were the ones who made the offer. Both emailed right back and said they never do business that way. Here is the front and back of the postcard. I don’t know who sent it, but it must be those at the phone number I was to call. You might want to look into it as I’m certain many more people got that postcard and taken in by it.”

The IRS Scam from Dan:

“Yes, Chris, I have been scammed somehow.  I received a notice from the IRS that my refund could not be direct deposited so my refund would be mailed within the next 4-6 weeks.  One problem, though; I have not yet filed my 2013 returns!  All the IRS will tell me is that a return has been filed utilizing my name and SSN so I now have to jump through all sorts of hoops and will have to file a paper return, waiting up to 6 months for any refund that might be due me.  According to them, this could also affect my future filings.”

The Paypal Scam from Margaret:

“A couple of years ago I was hacked and called the Yahoo number I found on line.  I do not know who answered but I paid $300 dollars for 5 years of security.  The payment went through Pay Pal.  I later found out that the payment did not go to Yahoo but to an unknown party and needless to say my e-mail was not protected.  I changed carriers but lost out on the money.”

The Bank of America Scam from Rich:

“Received email from Bank of America a few days ago requesting  information because my Bank of America Visa Card may have been compromised by someone . It stated, If I don’t fill out the information my charge card would be be cancelled as of a date. The information they wanted was my; name. dob and password. No mistakes on the email, it was very professional, looked official, the logo was 100 % and no missed spelled words.

I called bank of America and they told me they never send for information, as they have it all and they never threaten to cancel someone’s account.  I sent a copy to Bank of America fraud office.
I’m in my seventies which I know they go for. I have received a few of these over the years. I went from four charge cards to one and always check my account on the computer. Only got hit once and this is when the wife was on a cruise ship. It had to have been done from the ship. I found the fraud on my home computer and notified Bank of America. They wanted to cancel the card right then, but I talked to the person in charge and they allowed to keep the card active until the wife hit the states in three days. The wife called me when she arrived and I immediately cancelled the card. Maybe it is a good idea to have two cards in case you have to cancel one of them.”

Another IRS Scam from Steve:

“Steve Bryant here.  I enjoy your newsletter!  I think I may have come across a new scam or something of a twist on old theme.  On March 24, 2014, I received a CP53 Notice from the IRS concerning my 2013 1040.  The notice indicates that my refund check will be mailed to me since my financial institution rejected the direct deposit request.  The notice was post datedApril 7, 2014.  The interesting issue here is that I HAVE NOT FILEd MY TAXES for 2013 at this point.  I am in the process of researching the problem but I figured I would pass it by you in hopes you may be able to shed more light and post it in your newsletter.”

Do you have one?  Leave it in the comments below.  Thanks for stopping by….

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Leave A Reply (17 comments so far)


  1. Peter A. Carminati
    3 years ago

    I do full Scam Searches of all postcards on my hpps ixquick SEO site to look for faked addresses, people reporting their bad experience. This action causes me to junk the mail 99.95% of the time.
    Any post card with weird looking web site address are your first alert that something isn’t right. My
    Secunia program automatically scans the web address and puts up a notice on the screen that the address is not real. The extra time spent to do the SEO pays off as you don’t get “skinned.”


  2. Nancy Mim
    3 years ago

    The attached web site above is from T Monica Jones

    T Monica Jones is the name on caller ID. I think this is a scam, or someone calling to see if there is anyone home. I get call from this number at least twice a day, I don’t answer and there s no voice message. If I answer wit hello or say nothing- there is a click- no one is there. I Googled the name and found a the web site , which, surprisingly, has the same phone number. When I call, a recording says the number is not in service. The web says T Monica Jones and Associates with another number. When that number is called, the recording says “no longer in service”


  3. Margaret
    3 years ago

    Here is another one for you. A Russian friend applied on line ad for an American Green Card Lottery allegedly being sponsored by American Authorities. That was two years ago. Last week he got a phone call saying “Congratulations, you have won a Green Card”. He got all excited about his “win” and foolishly gave all his personal details, including the security number on the back of his Master Card He was kept on the phone for over an hour answering questions about his past employment. This gave the thieves time to process his M.C. to the tune of $800 “service fee” by someone apparently in Europe who cashed the money into Euros. I believe he now has to pay the bank some $2,000 for this European money exchange. How many immigrants to America would know that the U.S. Government does not do Green Card business that way?


  4. Wild Bill
    3 years ago

    I was contacte by a person claiming to be my Grandson and that he had gone to Las Vegas for a funeral of his best friend. He said that he and some friends had gone to a club that night and had a few drinks. When they left the club there was an accident in which he broke his nose and a woman driving the other car was also injured.

    the police who were nearby ran a breath check on him and found he had a1.0 level. He was arested and was in jail and calling from the pay phone at the jail. He wanted to know if I could help with the bail. I said ok. He said his lawyer would contact me and for me to write down his case nr. which was 0G1980 and that his lawyer would call in later. I called my Gs. in AZ and he was at work! If that lawyer calls Have I got a surprise for HIM!


  5. brendon
    3 years ago

    Scam on the American people.

    Many of you have heard of Sheriff Joe Arpaio, the Maricopa County, Arizona Sheriff. Well, when Obama FINALLY released his long form birth certificate on the White House website 27 April, 2011, Sheriff Joe and his investigative team lead by Mike Zullo, (along with forensic document specialists and computer specialists) found after a SEVERAL MONTH LONG INVESTIGATION that UNEQUIVOCALLY Obama’s long form birth certificate AND his Selective Service Registration receipt are 100% FRAUDULENT.


  6. Mary AnneJohnson
    3 years ago

    I just received an email from S Sgt.Andrew Lester that said he had a proposition for me ..I answered and ask what the proposition was? Then he answered me three days later and said he was in Iraq and long story short, he has some of the money taken from Saddam Hussein’s homes and he and 6 other solders were being sought by the Army and he wanted me to help him get the 25 million to America..and BTY I’m suppose to keep this strictly confidential…LOL

    I Goggled his name and came up with SCAM


  7. Dave
    3 years ago

    Hello. My daughter got compromised on the IRS return scam. She checked on her 2012 return in May of 2013 on where her refund check for 2012 was. For about 6 weeks the IRS website just said processing. After multiple calls she was informed that they had already paid her refund by check and said her return was filed in January. She had not filed her return until March. Long and short was after having to file a police report, go to the SSI office with all her ID and the report and waiting 6 months, she just received her refund check ( November 2013). The IRS was slammed with these types of frauds and were doing a criminal investigation on her case. They told her when they are done, they will supple her with the perpetrators information so she can sue them. I guess we shall see how many more years and what will become of it.


  8. Amalya
    3 years ago

    Re: IRS SCAM FROM DAN and TO ANYONE WHO IS A VICTIM OF ID THEFT

    If the IRS told you that they received a tax return in your name, with your SSN on it, that is NOT a scam, you are the victim of identity theft! Here is what to do, in the order you need to do it. If you do these things,in this order, the IRS will probably not penalize you for the fraudulent taxes filed under your information.

    1. Contact the SSA (ssa.gov) and request a statement of your wages and earnings for 2013. Next, request printed confirmation that your SSN belongs to you, and to you alone.

    2. Call your local law enforcement, sheriff or police, and tell them you want to file an identity theft report. They may try to give you excuses and a run around, don’t let them. Insist that they take a report and be sure to get the officer’s badge number and the report number before you finish.

    3. Go to ftc.gov and make a report there. Be as specific as you can and do not be afraid of leaving too many details. They will issue a report number, copy that page.

    4. Take the information from Social Security, the police report number, and the FTC sheet with the report number on it to the IRS. This information may keep them from penalizing you for the fraudulent filing. You need each and every piece of this info, or they will send you to get it.

    Next, you need to call each of the three credit reporting agencies and ask them to red flag your credit file for possible fraudulent activity. This will prevent anyone from opening up instant credit accounts on your credit. Confirm that they will call you if anyone does try to open an account. Tell them that you want to close your account to any pre-screened offers of credit. They should offer to send you a complimentary credit report for you to check, to be sure there is no fraudulent activity on it now. When you receive the reports, if you find accounts that do not belong to you, contest them with the credit reporting agencies immediately. You can do that in writing via snail mail, or online. If the amount of money being contested is more than $1000, and the thief has bought big items such as cars or houses, you may need to secure an attorney to help you contact the credit companies the thief used and explain to them the situation, and these charges are not your responsibility. You will need to provide each credit company with copies of the documents you received from the SSA, Police, and FTC, plus a copy of your drivers license.

    Keep a log of the date and time you make contact with anyone, what the person’s name is, what was said, what you were looking to accomplish, and what the end result was prior to hanging up the phone. Anytime anyone calls you regarding this issue, make note of the day and time, who it is you are speaking with, the reason for the call and the end result. Keep detailed notes of any information credit card companies give you. The thief may inadvertently give information that could lead law enforcement to him. The court welcomes well kept documentation by ID Theft Victims, and often will reimburse the victim for the time spent working on the case.

    Do NOT Forget to call your law enforcement agency at least once a month, even if you have nothing new to report to them. They might have something new to tell you. If you have ever heard the saying, “The squeaky wheel gets the oil,” you need to be the squeaky wheel, causing them to give you the “oil” (info) you need.


  9. Allan Mosher
    3 years ago

    I have not gotten through your book but I have experienced and spoken with others that have experienced a similar scam…An email from a friend indicating he was robbed and lost everything, passport, wallet, etc. and needed funds to come home and would I wire funds to him…I was going to do this and the Western Union needed a question that the recipient would be answer. there was a technical problem, (which saved me from this disaster), and I offered to send the funds to the American Embassy. The individual declined saying could not get there which raised a red flag. When asked what the question to be asked to receive the funds that the whole thing ended. Turns out that my friends computer had been hacked and everyone on his list received the same request for funds…This same scam was used on a fellow Shriner and happily I told him of my experience…


  10. J Hill
    3 years ago

    I sent an order for plans or a CD (the website never explained exactly the form it was to come in), and it did sound like it was too good to be true, as it was for generating more energy than was put in. I never got anything, but was charged, and now, after entering all the information on the order in the customer service part of the website, the response is that it has no record of the order.

    Another scam that was happening locally recently – an email comes in supposedly from the county court, and which looks legit, saying that the person sent the email missed their appointment for jury duty, and threatens arrest, etc. if the person does not send personal info to the outfit that sent the original email.


  11. Steven
    3 years ago

    My parents were called that their grandson (my nephew) had flown with a friend to Mexico City and had been caught with drugs in the rental car and had been arrested. Supposedly the call was from the Mexican police station. They needed to send money to get an attorney or they were going to be imprisoned. They put a guy on the phone that sounded enough like my nephew to my mother (When he said “Grandma?”) that it fooled her. Unfortunately they were swindled out of a chunk of change and then later wanted more, which is when they caught on to it.


  12. cactusbob
    3 years ago

    My emails and blog postings would indicate I present an obstacle to Obama’s socialist plans. I have had satisfactory dealings with the IRS for many years. I need to get and submit numerous forms 1096, 1098, and 1099’s, and they can’t be downloaded since they are magnet-inked and/or padded forms. Last year, for the 2012 returns, I ordered the forms from the IRS, but they gave me only half of what I ordered, with back-order promises. I re-ordered and again got only half – which gave me the desired total, just before the deadline, and the backorder never arrived.

    For 2013, I made another order of what I needed, and again only half of most forms arrived. No mention of backorder. Again I reordered, promptly this time, and enough forms arrived just before the deadline. No backorder ever came.

    Apparently one has to order once, and then shortly after, the wife needs to order also. That will be my plan for 2014 returns, assuming I have any taxable income by then.


  13. Peter Loran
    3 years ago

    I received an email once saying I had won some money from an official sounding government department of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.I followed up by calling the phone number provided and was asked for some very personal information to verify my identity.Then I was told I would have to pay the tax on the money up front before they could release the money to me.The tax was in the thousands of dollars and they also wanted my bank account info so that the money could be directly deposited into my account.They would not send a certified check saying direct deposit was quicker,easier and safer. I checked out the government dept. they said they were from and it actually exists but it has nothing to do with any winnings or taxes. Occasionally I will get a phone call from someone trying similar scams. Beware!


  14. Kimi Olson
    3 years ago

    A man claiming to be from the IRS said that my daughter was being investigated for overseas money laundering! When I said: “BS!” I told him that we were upstanding American citizens, he told me that I couldn’t be an upstanding citizen because of my language!! The first call was from a woman, when we called the # back, a man ( Inspector Shmee!) with a foreign language explained the situation. My daughter is 31 & this man just gave me the info as if I was her. We reported to the police & they said it was the first call they had received involving this scam! The call came from a supposed Washington, DC #. There are 2 numbers to watch out for: 202-241-0003 & 302-241-1416. Just wanted to add this to the long list IRS scams!


  15. Tim Yorgan
    3 years ago

    There’s a simple bottom line. Never…never, use the phone numbers or contact information supplied on the internet or mail even though it looks familiar. Keep the original contact information for every financial institution and use their stuff only. Check your balances and change passwords regularly.


  16. Darrel Tyree
    3 years ago

    I’m Darrel Tyree and last December 24th, my Facebook account was hacked and duplicated. I usually have my log-ons parked remotely so I don’t fall for the dummy screen asking for my log on and password but I apparently slipped up one time with FB. I cancelled my FB account and notified FB to immediately cancel any FB account using my name but they obviously ignored my request, and the requests to FB from dozens of family and friends formerly in my FB account who continue to receive solicitations and requests for money. I’m supposed to be stranded overseas and lost my money and passport and need a loan to get home, or I’ve won a lottery and somehow need their money to share the winnings.. I have e-mailed everyone of the 200 family and friends in my former FB account but they continue to receive solicitations from the impostor so I hope none have fallen for the scam.


  17. Steve
    2 months ago

    Wired Plastic Visa offers a prepaid Visa debit card. It can be good, especially if one has difficulty opening a U.S. bank account. It can be used to book hotels, flights, rental cars, etc., as well as receiving direct deposits and tax refunds.

    However, in the past 18-20 months, they have turned to scamming their long-term customers (like myself – I have been with them for more than 10 years).

    It is a simple scam: one loads the card (that is the only way you can make purchases with it, since it is not a credit card) and then Wired Plastic freezes the funds, claiming that there was “fraudulent” use of the card.

    Wired Plastic then cancels the card, refusing to issue the cardholder a refund until the cardholder faxes in copies of the following documentation:
    1. A Driver’s License.
    2. A utility bill matching the mailing address in file for the account/card.
    3. A social security card matching the social security data one provided when the account was opened.

    Of course, they already have all of this information, since it was required when the account was opened.

    Wired Plastic customer service reps will gleefully run you up and down the flagpole while they repeatedly insist that this documentation absolutely must be provided before they will take any action on your behalf.

    As I said, the whole time that this trick is being played out, Wired Plastic is sitting on your money. The card is cancelled, so obviously you cannot use it, but they will not give you your money back either.

    Even if you play along with this theft, they happily inform you that, once you waste time faxing them this data that they already have, it will take them another 3-5 business days for them to “review” it.

    I did a little research online and discovered that Wired Plastic has been pulling this stunt on long-term customers for at least the past 18 months or so. They have never been especially good at customer service, but in my dealings with them they had never resorted to basically open theft. Until now, that is.

    I found instances of long-term customers loading as much as $5,000.00 on their cards to make significant purchases, only to have their funds fraudulently frozen.

    I called them at least 8 times between 12/26/16 and 2/8/17 trying to get my money back, to no avail.

    Then I read in an online forum that another customer had made some progress by contacting VISA, so I decided to give that a try. I figured I had nothing to lose.

    I called VISA and they arranged a 3-way call including the Wired Plastic person.

    I stated my case in forceful, direct language, reminding Wired Plastic that their parent corporation, Bancorp, is a publicly-traded entity on NASDAQ, and that Wired Plastic cannot legally make up its own rules and the bloody customer be damned. I closed the call promising further action.

    To my great surprise, a Wired Plastic representative called me about three days later. Miraculously, everything had suddenly cleared up and they mailed me a new card.

    I just want to share this with everyone, and I hope it helps.


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