theoldwolf: (Headbang)
A recent fraud email from Benin, purporting to be from the "FBI". I've left it just as I received it.
Mega-hqiz beneath the cut )
theoldwolf: (Default)
My Dear,
Why have you decided to ruin this transaction that is virtually completed?
Why haven’t you complied so that we can get this done with 6 hours? Why are you delaying?
I have been waiting to hear from you for many days as you promised by no word till now.
Are you ok? Does it mean that you have not been receiving my emails?
All is set to get this done as soon as I hear from you and confirm the payment from you.
Meanwhile, how much have you been able to get?
Please get back to me and comply so that the transaction can be completed as scheduled.
Yours Faithfully,

Victor Kelly Brown
Phone: (202) 570 7193



Mr. Brown can't understand why I am delaying. Beyond the fact that his English is abominable, he wants money for no stated purpose, and he addresses me with the standard Nigerian salutation "My Dear."

I'm mostly posting this email to get this particular scam name and phone number indexed, in case any other person goes looking for it.

Email of this type screams "Advance Fee Fraud." Delete it without a second thought.
theoldwolf: (Default)
Continuing the saga of the scammers at LifeSecure USA, I just now received a call - the second in two weeks - from these wastes of human cytoplasm.

Some time ago I complained to the Arizona Attorney General about these people, and received a letter back from that office with a reply from LifeSecure, promising that my number (at which they attempt to contact my mother), had been removed from their internal database.

In an interesting twist and confirmation of my assumptions, the number that came up on my caller ID is the same one being used by "EMT Medical Alert", another elder-scare fraud being run by the same outfit (480-237-8044).

When they call, I always answer in an elderly voice and let on that I'm my mother, to see what the pitch of the day is. Today, it ran something like this:

"Hello, [Name], I'm one of the security officers at LifeSecure, and I'm calling about one of the unauthorized charges which was made to your account some time ago. I wanted to let you know that this company has been caught and is being prosecuted for fraud, and that's why you've been receiving a lot of telemarketing calls lately." (Sound familiar? Just a variation of their standard script.) They make themselves sound so official...

At this point I informed the caller that LifeSecure USA had promised the Attorney General of Arizona that my number had been removed from their call list, and instead of saying something like, "Oh wow, I apologize, I'll make sure you never get called again" (Ha! Wishful thinking!) he started to argue with me about "How long ago was that?"

All I can do is keep pestering the Attorney General's office until they do something or get tired of me.
theoldwolf: (Default)
White House reports billions of improper payments in 2009 - CNN.com

When there are billions of dollars in the trough, and nobody's around minding the farm, you can bet that the swine will come running from all directions.

That's my money the gummint is throwing around, and it pisses me off mightily because I don't have enough as it is. Nor do a lot of other people that I know. And I'm one of the better-off ones.

theoldwolf: (Default)
Yesterday I posted my frustration about people that kept calling me from 480-223-0973, but there was never anyone there.

Today, they did me the honor of answering, and I spent about half an hour on the phone with them. It was most enlightening.

These people are running a "scare scam", and they indicated to me that their parent company - whoever that is - also owns an outfit called "EMT Medical Alert" that sells a worthless medical information service.

Here's the basic step-by-step they took me through, as closely as I was able to transcribe it.

[EDIT: It's interesting to note that they have called me on both my numbers. Both numbers are already on the DNC...]




Agent: Hello, is this Mr. XXXXX? (They used my mother's name, since her info and my phone number are associated on some old "sucker lists". We've changed her phone number since then.)

Me: (sounding very old) Yes.

Agent: We're calling because youre name and personal information have been put into circulation, and is being bought and sold all over the world. You are a prime target for identity theft. You probably get a lot of telemarketing calls, don't you?

Me: Yes, I sure do.

Agent: Now what we're going to start with is we're going to send you a copy of your credit report - call us back when you get it and we'll step you through a number of things to help you protect yourself. Do you have a pencil handy?

Me: Yes.

Agent: I want you to write down this name: Life Secure USA, and this number: 1-800-891-7636. Next we need to verify some information. Mr. XXXX, we need you to create a password for this account.

Me: I give some bogus password.

Agent: What is your birthdate? (Money shot!)

Me: I give some bogus date.

Agent: Now, Mr. XXXX, I show you listed as living at "address". Is that correct?

Me: I give some bogus correction to the address to make it sound legitimate.

Agent: Now based on the services we provide in helping you protect your credit and put fraud alerts on your credit reports and bank accounts, everyone has a processing fee. Since you're listed as a senior citizen, your processing fee will be a lifetime, one-time fee. Now up where you wrote that phone number, I want you to write down $296.42, and then the word "lifetime". This is to indicate that there will never be another charge to your account. We also need to verify that you have a bank account: What bank do you do business with? (Money shot!)

Me: I give the name of a local bank.

Agent: Very good. I'm now going to connect you to a manager who will verify that all of this has been done correctly.

Manager: Hello, is this Mr. XXXXX?

Me: Yes

Manager: My name is "Scott". What we're going to do for you is put you on a nationwide do not call list, and do not mail list, and also put a fraud alert on your bank accounts and credit information. Since you have been identified as having your information put into circulation, you are at extremely high risk for identity theft. Now in about 5 to 7 business days when you get your packet which includes your credit report, we want to make sure you call us back and go through it with us. Please make sure all existing credit lines are yours when you get your credit report. Your fee covers you up to one million dollars plus legal fees in case of identity theft. Do you have the $296.42 fee in your checking account today?

Me: Yes, I do.

Manager: Are you the only signer on your account?

Me: Yes, I am.

Manager: We're going to call your bank and put a fraud alert on your account. Do you have your checkbook in front of you?

Me: Yes.

Manager: We're going to have you fill out a blank check and then void it out. You don't need to send this check to us. In the "Pay to the Order Of" field, I want you to write our company name, "Life Secure USA". For the date, put today's date, July 3, 2009. For the dollar amount, rite $296.42. In the memo field, I want you to write "Lifetime" - this is to remind you that you will be covered for life. Again, be sure you call us and walk through your credit report with us. For the first month, we're going to monitor your credit for free. If you want to continue that service thereafter, it's only $19.95 per month. What this means is that if anyone, say in California, tries to open credit using your information, that account will be immediately flagged. If it's not authorized, that person will be arrested. You should get everything in about 5-7 working days. Now, write "Void" across the whole check. Now look down at the bottom of the check. Do you see the first group of numbers? (He wants my bank's routing number!)

Me: I give him a valid routing number for the local bank.

Manager: Do you see the second group of numbers? (He wants my checking account number!).

Me: I give him a bogus account number.

Manager: What's the number of the check you just voided out?

Me: I give him a bogus check number

Manager: Now, we have written down that your password for this account is "xxxxxx". Is that correct?

Me: Yes, it is.

Manager: We like to have a secondary password in case you ever forget your first one. Do you remember the first car you ever owned? (This is a standard bank-account verification question - and he wants it.)

Me: I give hime a bogus car.

Manager: Now "xxxxx" is your wife, correct? (He used my mother's name).

Me: No, "xxxxx" was my mother.

Manager: What's your first name?

Me: I give him a bogus name.

Manager: Now we're going to go through a recording process with your bank, which will act as a legally binding contract for charging your bank account the fee we discussed. I'm going to put you on hold for a moment, and then I'm going to ask you a series of questions to verify the information we've gathered.

Me: Before we do that, can I get your website and land-address?

Manager: The website is www.lifesecureusa.com. Our address is:

Life Secure USA
70 South Val Vista Road
Suite A3
Gilbert, AZ 85209


Me: Just before we go on, can you tell me why the script you are using to gather and verify this information is identical to another Arizona-based company, EMT Medical Alert (Google them - the results are interesting)?

Agent: (Smooth - I could tell the question shook him, but he didn't miss a beat). Well, our parent company also owns EMT Alert as well as other companies, and we have to do this in an orderly manner to make sure it's all very legal since we're dealing with private an sensitive information.

At this point I terminate the call, indicating that all the info I have provided is bogus, and letting him know that I'm not interested in his scam.




Now look what's happened. If I had been Mr. Average Senior Citizen, I would have happily given out my name, address, birthdate, bank account information, and most likely a social security number had I let things go that far. My bank would be charged almost $300.00 (with a verbal authorization on file) and probably additional charges of the same amount per month, plus possible charges of $19.95 per month depending on their verification script. And all for what? Probably next to nothing. I'm doubtful that my bank would accept a call from some third-party random wanting to put a "fraud alert" on my checking account.

Their website looks legitimate. They may provide just enough service to keep from being labeled a total scam by the attorneys general of the various states. But their technique is smooth, polished, and - to my way of thinking - deceptive, frightening and underhanded, because you just know all that information is going to be on 103 "pigeon lists" tomorrow.

If you get called by Life Secure USA, hang up!

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