Thursday, December 17, 2015

SCAM UPDATE – Scams Continue to Victimize Consumers

Here are some scams and prevention measures that have made the news in the last few weeks:

·         Washington Attorney General sues world’s largest tech support company for scamming customers. Yesterday, the Washington State Attorney General’s Office announced that it has file suit against iYogi, for unfair and deceptive business practices. According to the AG’s office iYogi promoted itself with online ads. When customers called the phone number in the ads, iYogi representatives would claim that they could provide tech support services for whatever company the customer inquired about, including Microsoft, Apple, and HP. The representative would claim that he has found “infected files” on the customer’s computer then aggressively sell them tech support plans ranging in price from $140 to $379. The representative would also tell the customer that they needed to upgrade to Windows 10, an $80 charge, even though Microsoft offers the upgrade for free. For details on this scam, go to the Attorney General’s press release:

·         The Better Business Bureau has been warning the public about a delivery scam. Someone claiming to be from a delivery company calls you saying that they have a package on the way. A short time later, someone shows up with a gift package at your door. They will not know who sent you the package if you ask. If you accept the package then you will be asked to pay a “verification fee.” The driver then produces a hand held card scanner to swipe your credit or debit card. According to the BBB, this is a scam to collect your credit card or debit card information. You can see details here:

·         Be on the alert for scammers posing as legitimate business. While chip cards are supposed to make it harder for crooks to manufacture credit cards, scammers are changing their tactics by pretending to be legitimate companies to get you to give them your account information. With the data breaches over the last year or so, including those involving federal government agencies, many fraudsters may take out credit card accounts or even file income tax returns in your name. Check your credit report regularly with the three credit reporting agencies, Experian, TransUnion and Equifax. Also, file your income tax return as early as you can. For more information go to:

·         Everett police catch up to prolific identity thief. Earlier this month, the Everett Police Department arrested Jaime Dinkins for investigation of forgery, theft and identity theft. He is accused of passing at least 74 bogus checks worth more than $50,000 in Snohomish County. He is suspected of being part of a stolen mail and counterfeit check cashing ring. This arrest points out that identity theft can be from local criminals through your mailbox (or even your parked car). The Herald:

·         Be sure to secure your router. The Federal Trade Commission recommends that you secure your router from identity thieves by changing the name of your router from the default name, change your router’s pre-set passwords and turn off any “remote management” features that your router might have. FTC:



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