iTunes-Gift-Cards

Stuff have an article about a scam involving iTunes vouchers.

$8000 in iTunes to pay tax? iDon’t think so

The scam plays out like this

  • Phone rings, it’s the IRD, you owe us mega bucks and there’s a warrant out for your arrest
  • Pay us in iTunes vouchers to make this problem go away
  • Victim buys vouchers
  • Victim phones back with the codes

Don’t be a mug – anyone who wants to be paid using something other than actual money is a con. Go to the Police. Even if there is a warrant out for your arrest it’s far better, and safer, to go through that rigmarole than to risk being sucked in.

Be the good guy – If you are in a shop and you see someone buying a bundle of these have a chat with them. Maybe they have 80 grandchildren and they’re generous, but it’s far more likely that they’re being scammed.

 

paypalThere is a new scam in town where people befriend young men, primarily, and ask them to purchase a game using PayPal.

The so-called “friend” deposits money into the PayPal account, the game is purchased, the licence codes handed over and then the “friend” issues a chargeback with PayPal. The “friend” now has his money back and can sell the licence codes for the game to somebody else.

The young man now has a negative balance and PayPal and, because of his age, he can’t report this to PayPal because he has opened account fraudulently. If he doesn’t pay the money back there are long term ramifications regarding his credit history and his ability to get finance in the future. The consequences are potentially far-reaching.

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This blog has suddenly been woken from the dead by someone called Te Ma’imi purporting to be legal counsel for a chap called Alex Savage who runs a directory called NZBOL.

I wouldn’t normally create a page for Alex Savage because he’s done nothing to attract attention with his directory but as his counsel is claiming I’ve slandered him I feel I need to have my information in one place.

Let’s create a timelineContinue reading

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-29805002

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-29805002

The BBC website has an article on “number spoofing” being used in phone based scams to get private info.

This could well be happening in NZ already! I frequently have my home line forwarded to my mobile and there have been numerous times when I’ve tried to return a missed call and the number doesn’t exist. Or when one of my kids has taken a call and I’ve tried to call back because the message they’ve taken hasn’t made sense.

When I was a kid I was taught that if you are unsure about anyone’s identity find out who they are and then look up their phone number, call and verify if they are meant to contacting you. The context we were given was fake policemen, but the rule works for any kind of faker!

If you take a call and are dubious ask for their extension but find the phone number yourself and call them back.

anti-virus-hoaxAny phone call you get from your Internet Provider (ISP) should verified if they are saying anything even remotely dubious. Call them back on their publicly listed phone number, not one given by the caller.

In this latest scam they’re inciting fear from regular people by pretending that their access will be terminated if they don’t download some software. No prize for guessing that the software will be anti anti virus, right?!

While you should have anti virus software running it is not for your ISP to dictate which anti virus software you should use.

HoaxBy now most people I know are familiar with the caller who claims to be calling from “Windows” and wants them to remove security files from their computer. There is a set script and over the years the only time I’ve found that they waver from it is when goaded – although the smart ones just hang up and move to the next number.

We’ve had a number of these in the last few weeks and my son is getting fairly well practiced at playing along until he gets to what he thinks is a hilarious punchline. I should probably stop him but I lack the will.

Needless to say – if you get the call, don’t make any changes to your computer.

If challenged they can’t tell you which computer in the house is causing the problem, yet they have your phone number. They fail at the first hurdle.

So the question that has to be asked is who is making money out of this? Because I’ve never heard of anyone owning up to being ripped off by them (unlike the Nigerian Oil/Investment scams where the victims are reported in the news) I can only assume that those they do hoodwink are so technically unsophisticated that they don’t have important info on their computers anyway.

Which leads me to think that there is some “HotShot” out there selling a “package” to the sorts of people who are susceptible to Get Rich Quick schemes and don’t mind breaking laws in foreign lands.

They pay upfront, hire the call centre, rope in their friends and family and start making calls.

Eventually the operation fails because they simply run out of money and the HotShot is nowhere to be seen. Our phones go quiet for a while until the HotShot finds his next victim.

Sonia Klair

Sonia Klair

Absolutely outrageous that someone who defrauds “customers” of $700,000 would have the gall to claim that 10 months home detention is “manifestly excessive”.

A woman who fleeced small businesses in a “sophisticated” fake invoicing scheme that used forged documents made in India has appealed against her sentence.

Sonia Klair, who is now living in Australia, in 2008 set up NZ Look, an internet-based directory where consumers could look up products and services.

During that year, the company began sending out documents that falsely told the recipient that they already had listings with NZ Look and invited them to sign on for another term.

The customers contacted were from a database that originally belonged to NBO, a similar business previously run by Klair and her then-husband.

From early 2010, Klair used forged documents made in India in an attempt to convince businesses they had previously signed on for NZ Look’s services.

These documents copied over customers’ signatures from NBO documents to NZ Look documents.

Klair would then send an invoice requesting payment for the listing to these “clients”.

Read the rest of the article at the NZ Herald

Read the Judge’s sentencing notes.

There are so many versions of this scam but the NZ Herald has published a warning about one that is currently doing the rounds: Police warn of car ‘wrapping’ scam It works like this

  • Scammer gets in touch and offers you free sign writing
  • Scammer sends you a cheque

    One of the cheques sent to a "victim" who knew better than to bank the cheque and send the money.

    One of the cheques sent to a “victim” who knew better than to bank the cheque and send the money.

  • You bank the cheque
  • You send the Scammer the money to a different bank account
  • Scammer cancels the cheque
  • Scammer disappears
  • You try to reverse your payment and are refused

Past versions have involved trademe deals (they send money for what you are selling if you can buy other goodies on their behalf and ship, payment cancelled after shipping) and rental properties (payment to buy the right to view, only they don’t own the property and it’s probably already occupied). Nobody, absolutely nobody, is going to honour this kind of deal. They may seem credible, they may have built up your trust but that’s all part of the scam. Don’t get sucked in, and (I’d advise) don’t even play along.

Not an online scam – but one being fought online. Lets just hope Grant King has actually been able to go straight as claimed in the article.

A fraudster’s victim who fought back has won a landmark battle to name and shame the man who scammed him and dozens of others. Nearly two and a half years ago, Steve Taylor contracted Grant Norman King to build a sleepout for his elderly father behind the family home in West Auckland. Taylor paid three-quarters of the price – $23,500 – as a deposit. The sleepout was never built and the money was not returned. In a bid to get even, Taylor brought civil proceedings against King but when the cost of continuing the case became prohibitive, he took a different tack, setting up the website grantnormanking.com with the intention of warning others who might be drawn in. Within months other victims were clamouring to tell their stories and it was not long before Taylor built a comprehensive timeline of King’s offending.

Full article: Judge backs blogger’s fight against fraud

 

FWIW While I’ve met Steve Taylor, and haven’t met Grant King, I was unaware of this issue until today.