This scam is to discuss DEBTORS who scam companies and received services or merchandise and not pay. Here is a recent one. Debtor: American Midwest Clothing Inc Contact Name: Adnan Paryani Address: 2846 West 48th Place City: Chicago State: IL Zip: 60632 Country: USA Phone 1: 1-714-706-2830 Balance: $3,267.50 Business Name: FIVE STAR CLOTHING (01/15/2019) Phone: (312) 788-4404 (CT) FIVE STAR CLOTHING Business Name: AMERICAN MIDWEST CLOTHING INC (01/24/2014 to 01/15/2019) Phone: (714) 706-2830 (PT) AMERICAN MIDWEST CLOTHING INC Services remdered..Freight charges.
Crowdfunding is one way to support a project you believe in and get rewards for that support. But the project you’re backing is only as good as the people behind it. Some dishonest people can take your money but produce nothing – no product, no project, and no reward.
Here’s how crowdfunding works: People called “creators” ask for small amounts of money from lots of people to fund projects through websites like Kickstarter or Indiegogo. In exchange, creators offer rewards to contributors, like a product that the creators are trying to make. Sounds great…unless the creators don’t create anything but profit for themselves.
In its lawsuit against iBackPack, the FTC says people shelled out over $800,000 via crowdfunding campaigns. The company said those funds would help it provide consumers with backpacks and shoulder bags with built-in batteries for charging mobile devices. But, according to the FTC, iBackPack’s claims that bags would soon be going out to consumers were lies. What’s more, the FTC’s investigation found that the money the creators took in from their campaigns generally didn’t go toward what they said it would. Instead, the FTC says, iBackPack’s CEO pocketed a large part of the funds for his own personal use. And when people began to complain, the CEO allegedly threatened some of them – adding that he knew their addresses and other personal information.
If you’re thinking about contributing to a crowdfunding campaign, take a minute to research the creator’s background and reviews before you pay. For example, has the creator engaged in previous campaigns? How did those campaigns turn out?
If you learn about a crowdfunding scam:
Fraudsters are dipping their toes in the water by making mysterious — yet familiar — charges on users’ credit and debit cards.
Recently, more scammers. have been using iTunes as a disguise to make fraudulent purchases. According to financial site MoneyTips, the charge looks something like this: “APL*ITUNES.CON/BILL 866-712-7753 CA.”
The majority of the charges start out small (so small, the cardholder likely won’t notice them at first glance).
When you detect a charge that looks like the one above, MoneyTips recommends checking your purchase history. under the Apple account linked to the card in question to see if they add up.
One of the most sensitive pieces of personal information is a consumer’s Social Security number (SSN), used by companies, the government, and other institutions to identify individuals–and highly sought-after by identity thieves.
In our era of data breaches, electronic transactions, and privacy concerns, scammers are aware of how concerned consumers are about guarding their SSNs, and that is why we are seeing an increase in the “Social Security imposter scam.”
The Federal Trade Commission received more than 76,000 reports about the Social Security imposter scam in the past 12 months alone. With average losses of $1,500, this new scam is quickly becoming one of fraudsters’ favorite tricks.
The scam usually begins with a consumer receiving a call from someone claiming to be with the Social Security Administration. The caller informs the victim that their SSN has been suspended because it was stolen or has been involved in a crime.
In a variation on this scam, the caller may also reach out to tell a victim that they qualify for an increase in benefits. All they need to do is provide the scammer with some information. Typically, these callers will ask their victims several questions to get personal information that they can then use to steal their identity or drain their bank accounts.
Because of the numerous data breaches, these scammers may have access to accurate personal information—such as an individual’s real SSN—that they can use to build trust and appear legitimate. Regardless, before concluding the scam, fraudsters will almost always request payment to “unfreeze” the SSN or to process the increase in benefits. The scammer may request that they be paid via an unusual payment method such as by gift card, or some form of cryptocurrency like Bitcoin.
One complaint we received from a consumer in Florida is typical of the scam:
“I received a call from the Social Security office explaining my Social Security number had been stolen and someone is committing money laundering [with the number].” The thieves had “abandoned a car with drugs in it, [that was] purchased in my name [and] found in Texas.”
In order to resolve the issue, the consumer was “told to secure assets by purchasing gift cards,” and provide the gift card numbers to the Social Security office. The consumer was told that he would receive a refund equal to the amount he paid to unfreeze their account by the Federal Reserve in a few weeks.
Unfortunately, the consumer never received a refund, and he lost nearly $20,000 to this scam.
While the scam can be devastating, there are several steps you can take to prevent yourself, and your loved ones, from falling victim to this scam:
- Don’t trust caller ID. Scammers are very good at spoofing your caller ID to make it appear they are calling from a government agency. If you receive an unexpected call from Social Security, don’t answer it. Instead, call Social Security’s customer service number at 1-800-772-1213 to see if they were actually trying to contact you.
- Remember, Social Security will never suspend your Social Security number. If someone contacts you saying your number has been suspended, they are trying to steal from you.
- Social Security will never call and demand that you wire them money or pay them with gift cards or cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. Any supposed Social Security officer that makes this request is a fraudster.
- Don’t give out your personal information on request. If you are asked to confirm your Social Security number or bank account number by a phone call or email you did not initiate, it is a scam.
- Don’t trust a caller just because they know some of your personal information. Sadly, due to numerous data breaches, we have received reports that fraudsters are providing victims with their SSN to build trust. Just because an individual knows your Social Security number or some other piece of personal information, they are not necessarily legitimate.
- Spread the word. The Social Security imposter scam is relatively new, and many Americans may be unaware of it. To prevent additional victims from falling for this scam, we need your help. Please mention this scam, or forward this alert, to friends and loved ones. Together, we can stop this scam from growing, and protect Americans from identity theft, and prevent victims from losing their savings to fraudsters.
The Social Security imposter scam can be difficult to detect and is growing in popularity. If you come across this scam, or if you fall victim to it, report it! You can file a complaint at Fraud.org via this secure online complaint form. We’ll share your complaint with our network of more than 90 law enforcement and consumer protection agency partners who can and do put fraudsters behind bars.
The Federal Trade Commission has charged Worldwide Processing Group with illegally purchasing and collecting debts that people didn’t owe or had disputed. The FTC reported the company knew the debts were fake, but collected them anyway.
This group also collected fake debt from a Kettering woman who lost hundreds of dollars as part of the scam that she reported through the Better Business Bureau’s Scam Tracker.
“Protect yourself and stay up to date by regularly pulling your credit reports and reviewing account statements. Keep track of money owed so if you receive a call from a collection company, you know what is legitimate and what is not,” John North, president and CEO of BBB serving Dayton/Miami Valley said.Here are some tips to protect yourself from debt collection scams:
- Ask the debt collector to provide official validation notice of the debt: In the U.S., debt collectors are required by law to provide this information in writing. The notice must include the amount of debt, the name of the creditor and a statement of your rights. If the collector won’t provide the information, hang up.
- Ask for more information: If you do own money and aren’t sure if the caller is real, ask for his or her name, company, street address and telephone number.
- Do not provide bank account, credit card or other personally identifiable information over the phone: If the collector is legitimate, he or she should have details on the accounts in question.
- Hang up if you don’t have any outstanding loans: Don’t press any numbers or speak to an agent.
- Check your credit report: This will help you determine if you have outstanding debts or if there has been suspicious activity.
- Place a fraud alert on your credit report.
- Research the company: Use trusted third-party resources, such as your BBB. Visit www.bbb.org or call 937-222-5825 or 800-776-5301 to get a Business Profile on the company.
Many have been getting robocalls offering people refunds on tech support because “their company is going out of business”. They say they had offered Apple and Windows tech support and to call
1(855) 897-7005 , (855) 573-8777, among others to claim your refund. This is a scam to get your account info.
Are you aware that robocalls start to peak now during tax season? Readers could be interested in these recently published findings from an analysis of over 15 million FTC consumer complaints that show how tax season is a peak robocall season.
You can view the full report here: https://www.allareacodes.com/tax-time-robocalls/
Leading news outlets such as the San Francisco Chronicle and Tampa Bay Times have featured the data from the report. We created embeddable graphs, maps, and rankings to help readers be aware and prevent them from being scammed.
This scam takes advantage of travelers renting an apartment or house through Airbnb by featuring fake homes on the site and directing the renter to a fraudulent or “spoof” website to finalize payment. Scammers will often even trick real owners, who don’t know their property is being spoofed. Potential travelers end up paying money for a rental property that either doesn’t exist or isn’t available.
Theranos was once the start-up darling of Silicon Valley: It had a $9 billion valuation and claimed its technology could accurately run hundreds of tests on a few drops of blood. Then it was revealed to be a fraud.
Before it all came crashing down, Elizabeth Holmes, who founded the company as a 19-year-old Stanford dropout, had won the trust of corporations like Walgreens, world leaders like Henry Kissinger and former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, and the media — she appeared on magazine covers from Forbes to Fortune.Holmes, also Theranos’ former CEO, quickly went from an icon to a pariah facing federal fraud chargesafter its stunning fall.
But questions remain: How could someone pull off such a massive deception? And why did so many smart people buy it?
Much of it is the psychology behind deception, says Dan Ariely, a behavioral expert whom Holmes sought out for advice as things started to fall apart and who appears in the documentary “The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley,” which premiered Monday on HBO. In that way, he cautions, Holmes may not be so different from the rest of us.
“If we end up with this story and say, it’s one bad apple in one industry, that’s a bad lesson,” Ariely tells CNBC Make It. “This is about the human condition.”
Holmes believed her own lies
“One of the more interesting things about Elizabeth was I don’t think that … she thought she was doing anything wrong,” says Jessie Deeter, a producer of “The Inventor.” “She really believed her own story. … She believed her own bull—-.”
In fact, when Deeter spent several hours with Holmes trying to persuade her to be interviewed for the documentary, “there was no sign of mea culpa,” Deeter says, adding that Holmes seemed more interested in having a film document what she believed would be Theranos’ “Phoenix-like rise back to power.” (Holmes ultimately declined to participate.)
Though that might seem delusional, Ariely, author of “The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty,” says it’s psychology. “It’s about the stories we tell ourselves,” he says, and that’s “a slippery slope.”
Ariely points to a study he and his colleagues performed, where they looked at people’s brains as they told lies over and over again. “We saw that over time, their brains reacted less and less and less to lies, they were less sensitized,” he says.
“We start believing our own lies,” Ariely tells CNBC Make It.
Ariely also says human brains are good at remembering general statements or ideas, but they are not so good at remembering where the information came from, or sometimes even whether it is true.
It’s a psychological concept called source monitoring: “When our brain gets a message, we don’t separate very well the statement and where it came from, and we can often get very confused … and not remember,” says Ariely. “It’s why fake news works so well.”
Then, confirmation bias can kick in — people will focus on information and data that supports what they believe or want to be true, says Ariely.
People lie more when it’s for a good cause
“It’s a lot easier to do bad things when you think that you’re doing it for a really good cause,” says Deeter.
Indeed, according to a study Ariely details in “The Inventor,” people actually lie more when it’s for something positive, like charity. And they don’t feel emotionally conflicted about the lie. That’s because they can lie and still think of themselves as a good person, Ariely says in the documentary.
A good cause also makes a lie easier to buy.
Holmes was selling “the dream … of making the world a better place with transparent and affordable access to your own health care,” Erin Edeiken, who co-produced the film, tells CNBC Make It. “That is such an easy mission to get people behind.”
Holmes frequently talked about Theranos by telling the story of her beloved uncle who was diagnosed with skin cancer, which quickly became brain and bone cancer, according to “The Inventor.” He died too young and Holmes hoped that with the help of her blood-testing technology, “less people [will] have to say goodbye too soon.”
It was that kind of passion that hooked all kinds of people on Theranos. For instance, many venture capitalists will tell you that they invest in an entrepreneur and their vision, rather than a business plan. Tim Draper, one of the first investors in Theranos (as well as Tesla and bitcoin), says as much in the documentary.
And a good story that conveys that vision can go a long way.
“The reality is that data just doesn’t sit in our minds as much as stories do,” Ariely says in the documentary. “[S]tories have emotions that data doesn’t. And emotions get people to do all kinds of things, good and bad.
“[I]f you think about the people who invested in [Holmes] with very little amount of data, it’s about emotional appeal and having trust and believing the story and being moved by this, and being able to tell themselves a story.”
It’s not as easy as good versus bad
Theranos officially dissolved in September, just six months after Holmes settled with the Securities and Exchange Commission over charges of “massive fraud” in a deal that included a $500,000 fine and banned her from serving as a director or officer of a public company for 10 years. Holmes and former Theranos President Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani still await trial on criminal fraud charges and could face up to 20 years in prison if convicted.
Ariely says it’s “hard to tell” if everyone is capable of a lie as big as Theranos. “But I will tell you that my experience with dishonesty is that a lot of it is about slippery slopes,” he says. “Things can get very bad [for] any of us.”
“We should all be much more careful,” says Ariely.
CNBC Make It reached out to attorneys for Holmes and Balwani for comment on the HBO documentary and their pending criminal charges but received no response. A spokesperson for Kissinger’s consulting firm, Kissinger Associates, also did not respond to a request for comment. Mattis could not be reached for comment, but has declined to comment in the past. A Walgreens spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment. Both Forbes and Fortune declined to comment but pointed to their own subsequent coverage of the Theranos fraud.