Spammers blog postings
|Earliest: February 20, 2004||Latest: April 8, 2018||Total: 21|
|April 8, 2018|
Palmco Power keeps calling me via (888) 269-7397 and (978) 523-1013. They are trying to get me to switch the energy supplier to Palmco.
Their high-pressure sales tactics haven't convinced me to switch. I never give them any account information.
For a while I thought it was Tomco that was calling, a London based energy provider. A caller did clarify the correct name.
Voters Wanted this Change
In 2005, Massachusetts voters approved deregulation of energy sources. Consumers now have the choice to where their electricity company should get the energy for their home.
Read up on the Massachusetts Energy Deregulation.
All Fun and Games until you do the Math
They claim to have the lowest price, but data from Eversource says they are one of the most expensive energy providers.
As of today, NStar/Eversource default cost is $12.888 (cents/kWh). So if you do nothing that is how much it will cost you. It's a good base number to understand.
Palmco says it can provide cheaper energy - it does for about a month. When you go to their site, you see a nice promotion for 10.100 (cents/kW)
However if you go to page two, the story changes a bit. That 10.100 (cents/kW) was a teaser rate. The second month it jumps to 13.9 (cents/kWh). Now you're paying more for energy than the standard rate.
While there's no cancellation fee, they are probably hoping that most new customers will forget about the switch.
Now you ended up paying more for no reason. So why would you switch?
One More Thing
On the call, you might be asked to give your Electric Provider account information - don't do it. They may use the information to switch your account over the phone.
Think it won't happen? MCI did this is the 1980s. A market firm, acting on MIC behalf, changed the long distance provider of thousands of customers without them knowing. (Read up on that story.)
Next time PalmCo calls you, tell them:
Thanks for letting me know about the deregulation. I'll do some research and if you're the best option, I'll certainly switch. (Click)
Oh if they call back - and they will...
We did our research and made our choice. (Click)
If you still get callbacks...
Is this xxx? (Any Company that bothering you - might be a different energy provider.)
Well.... my neighbor switched last month and since the switch, they had nothing but horror stories about the whole process. So no thank you! (Click)
|February 4, 2018|
Fake IRS are Still Calling
This week I got a call from the Fake IRS. Seems that they are back in business again. Thakkar -- also known as "Shaggy" was arrested last April. Apparently, there are enough people who know about the scam technology to continue the scam.
Learn more about Sagar Thakkar and the Mira Road Call Centre Scam.
They called me at (240) 428-4213
Don't Fall for their Scam
- I asked the caller could they give me specifically what was wrong on my tax form that caused the "miscalculation." She was not able to do that - all the responses were vague.
- When I got transferred so that I can make the payment and not get jailed, I asked the Senior Officer what time was it in Washington DC. I could hear some typing - a Google search perhaps?
- When I mentioned I could hear computer typing - that is when the call went downhill. They asked if I thought it wasn't real and I told them that clearly, it wasn't.
The Internal Revenue Service has a site where you can Report Phishing.
Remember: Call 1-800-366-4484 to determine if the caller is an IRS employee with a legitimate need to contact you.
|January 14, 2018|
Asterisk Open Source PBX
Looks like "Scam or Fraud" companies are using Asterisk Open Source PBX:
Congratulations. You have successfully installed and executed the Asterisk open source PBX. You have also installed a set of sample sounds and configuration files that should help you to get started. Like a normal PBX, you will navigate this demonstration by dialing digits. If you are using a console channel driver instead of a real phone you can use the dial, answer, and hang up commands to simulate the actions of a standard telephone.
I call this Phone Number: (225) 217-3374, which is labeled as a 'Scam or Fraud' by Hiya.
Heard this line when I called them: "Please enter one or more keywords separated by * and then press the pound key." A quick internet search found this Asterisk Open Source PBX transcript - which matches exactly what I heard.
There's no indication specifically what (225) 217-3374 is selling. I think it's safe to say that it certainly can't be a legitimate business if they didn't set up the PBX number correctly.
|October 22, 2017|
Spammers Calling as IRS Agents
You may get a call from someone pretending to be the IRS. Consider yourself lucky and play along.
Questions to ask IRS agent on an unsolicited call. These should give you an idea if the "IRS agent" has real knowledge on who you are. If they say they are from the IRS these should be easy for them.
- When did I file my taxes this year?
- What State did I file my tax form?
- Did I use Standard or Itemized deductions?
- How many dependents were listed on the form?
- Did I owe money or received a refund this year?
- Did I file Electonic or via US Mail?
- What state did I file my tax form?
- Which tax forms did I file?
- Did I contribute to the Presidential Election fund?
- Since H & R Block (or your accountant ) filled out the tax form, have you notified them? Shouldn't they be the ones you need to arrest since they filled out the form and signed it?
If they push off because they don't have the proper document or access to your account:
Seven Bonus Questions
- When was the review done? Is this considered an official Tax Audit? Why aren't the IRS audit proceedure being followed?
- Your in Washington DC - What time is it there?
- What Federal Exams did you have to pass?
- Section 2 of the IRS code was abruptly changed last year do you know what areas got changed?
- Who's signature is on the $1 bill?
- Who the person in charge?
- Why should I pay any amount when I don't know what the error is? How can I prevent this error in the future.
Just a friendly reminder
IRS will not accept payments from a "Government approved store." So if Target, Walmart and CVS come up in the conversation - its a scam.
If you have to stay on the line so they can tell you what to do - its a scam.
If you feel pressured in any way because of a threat of an arrest for something that you're just hearing for the first time - its a scam.
If they are not able to answer any of the above questions correctly - its a scam.
Time to Say Good Bye
When you had enough time role playing.
"Thanks for letting me know about the situation. I will stop by the IRS office on my way to work tomorrow and take care of this."
"I am at the airport heading to Atlanta and don't have access to a car. Can I call back later?"
"I can't get to a Walmart because I am in the Magic Kingdom in Disney World. Beautiful day. I'll have to take care of this when I get home. Guess I don't have to worry about the police coming to arrest me."
|October 1, 2017|
G-Shock Car Shock Promotion Update
My encounter with the Casio Promotion scammer came to an abrupt end on Wednesday. No shots were fired, no prisoners taken.
I put up the entire chat log as well as the email conversations on a special page (It?s worthy of a separate page). I hope that people find it entertaining and educational on how a scammer was persistent on getting me to send the money.
My favorite exchange came on Tuesday afternoon. When I was ?discouraged? that they didn?t tell me that it costs money to send money via Western Union:
How it all ended
On Wednesday morning, xx hours after this whole ordeal started, I was out of excuses and decided to end it with a simple email:
|Date:||Wed, September 27, 2017 12:37 pm|
|To:||"Sierra Shelley" |
Thank you for letting us know about this opportunity. We are going to pass on this.
Was it Going to be the End?
I was certain that I would get a reply requesting to send back the full amount. As that would be a natural response if this was a legitimate opportunity.
No additional communication was made.
I wonder if they moved on or if the communication line was cut off because the scam was running too long and they were about to get caught.
Guess I'll just hang up the check on the virtual wall and thank them for six days of entertainment.
Before sending them an email, I did reach out to Casio and asked them if they were running a car promotion. You never know. They replied with the following:
Five Lessons Learned
If you're unsure about an offer that seemed too good to be true, as the company that is "sponsoring" the promotion. A simple email or phone call can help alert the company that someone is abusing their brand.
If anyone sends you a check and ask you to cash it and they perform some action - which involves you moving money, it's a scam.
Scammers will use scare tactics to get you to send them the money.
They will make it seem as legit as possible - except be very short in email replies. In communications, they will always be focus on the financial aspect and not the actual activity.
Western Union has an alert on top of their send money form. It's good advice. Hopefully, service workers at the store will ask follow up questions to put a sense of the reality of your transaction.
|July 23, 2017|
Government Grant Scam
Recently I have been calls about how I won a $9,000 grant. However, in order to collect the grant I have to pay $250 in Steam Card. Yes, this is a scam. Seriously who would collect a payment using Steam Cards?
The scam works by keeping you on the phone while you go to the store to get the gift card. They don't want to risk you talking to anyone else that might inform you that it's a scam. They will insist on staying on the phone and then "order you" to get the card.
The Federal Government will never ask you to pay for any processing fee to get a loan. In addition, they will not require a payment method by a gift card.
$9,000 Government Grant Scam
In my last call, I told them that it would be a while before I could get to the store. These are the phone numbers that have been calling me back to see if I have gotten the cards:
- (202) 470-0947
- (202) 350-0969
- (202) 643-6782
Don't be fooled, just because these are Washington DC numbers, doesn't mean that they are actually calling from Washington DC. Once when I called the number, I heard "Google Voice" isn't able to transfer the phone number.
|December 24, 2016|
If you get a call from (716) 210-9393 it's American Home Security. An automated machine greets you. Apparently, a human doesn't have to deal with the all the hang ups.
Automation Bleep Sound
You can tell that it's going to be some type of automation system because as soon as you say, "Hello" you'll hear a bleep sound.
Yes, the bleep tells you that an automated system dialed your number. You are the winner of the lucky phone number lottery.
The number is located in Pendleton, NY, and there is no American Home Security office in Pendleton, NY. This is clearly a scam or phone bait type of call.
The system tries to pick a "local" number with the hope you would answer it. I believe a lot of these "local" numbers were old AOL modem dial-in access points.
Time to Play!
I like to mess with their "Automation" process a bit. As soon as I hear the bleep sound I know that it's a scam waiting to happen.
Here's a brief transcript of a past call.
Caller: "This is American Home Security, how are you doing?"
If you get them to hang up, the system may reject your number from future calls. Then again, maybe they will keep trying until they win.
Caller: "Are you the Homeowner?"
Caller: "Do you own your home?"
Me: "We are borrowing it"
I try to use words that they don't expect. I do this to see if I can confuse the automation system.
Every once in a while it might be hard to determine if the caller is a human or a machine, I have a script for that.
Caller: "Are you the Homeowner?"
Me: "Wow, there was a big storm going by your area, did you loose power"
Caller: "I am sorry, Are you the Homeowner?"
|November 21, 2016|
mark.silberman78 spam emails
I have been getting a lot of these types of emails, not exactly sure of what they are trying to accomplished.
From - Mon Nov 21 11:21:55 2016
Received: from [::ffff:188.8.131.52] ([184.108.40.206])
Received: from unknown (HELO localhost) (email@example.com@220.127.116.11)
by 18.104.22.168 with ESMTPA; Mon, 21 Nov 2016 21:16:50 +0500
Subject: you've been scammed
Your email firstname.lastname@example.org has been hacked and spam is sent to all your contacts!
If you don't have a lawyer, you may contact me at email@example.com
The first of these types of emails started appearing on November 13, 2016. This weekend I received at least a 100 of these emails. I might be getting these emails due to some anti-sql injection that I have put in place. (Basically I giving the attempted hackers a run for their money.)
This email was also mentioned on Koos van den Hout.
|November 28, 2015|
Everyone once in a while, I end up at a page asking me to fill out some weird Survey information. If I fill out the survey I get some "cool gift." Usually these are on survey2015.info, aldimarket.club, fastestsurvey.com and uniccshop.cc.hypestat.com.
Ya, I know this a phishing type of scam, which is why the about sites are not linked. Clearly they are after my contact information.
What's really funny is on the page is usually testimony from people that "actually" got the cool gifts. One of the images is some "mystery" person with a child. (See the thumbnail image on the right.) I am sure its probably some stock photography but I haven't been able to find it.
Here are some of the quotes that I found from this women that goes by many strange names. She certainly likes the weight loss "cool gifts."
Seems that many of these domains were set up by Duy Nguyen. He is associated with 686 domains and 208 unique emails. Which makes me wonder what other products/services does the "mystery" person likes?
|January 25, 2013|
Google Verification Numbers
Google uses these numbers to text message their Google Verification codes:
- (240) 670-2451
- (213) 224-0739
- (240) 670-2291
- (785) 338-8106