Scambusters, Preventing Internet Scams & Phishing Attempts

This blog is dedicated to help preventing internet fraud and internet scams. Scambusters was a radio show I started in Albany Oregon, but due to defaulted payment by the radio station we took the show offline. Regardless of this issue we still wish to help prevent internet fraud and save people from internet loss. I have been interviewed and featured in various publications such as the Wall Street Journal, New York Times & Daily News, The London Times & AARP Newsletters. Please watch this blog for latest tips and tricks and scams to avoid.

Friday, February 22, 2008

New Yahoo / Skype IM Scam

New Yahoo / Skype IM Scam

We have received recently similar scams on both Yahoo IM and Skype. Personally we use Skype for our Biz-2-Biz communication and I use Yahoo for friends. My business partners are in California and it is easier for us to type back and forth a couple dozen times a day than it is to keep calling each other back and forth, and besides it is free.

Recently I received a IM from someone we don’t know and is not on our list. We are easy to find, as it is our business Skype and our name is the same as our company e-Powersellers. This person had a picture associated with her Skype and she is a lovely woman, or a least a picture of a lovely woman, odds are it is not a woman doing this scam.

The scam is simple, the person starts out wanting to just be a friend a contact, nothing more, just say hello. One said they are from Nigeria (warning 1) and the other from the UK. The UK one was trying to be friendlier, hoping I am single and that she can charm me and befriend me. Regardless I wanted to see where this was going as we have fun digging out the scams.

Sure enough after a few friendly chats hello back and forth and such they ask me for a favor. Seems their father passed away and has funds tied up in a bank in the USA. She asked if I have a printer and a bank account, and I assured her I of course did. She asked is it a big bank or a small bank (what a warning flag this is) so I told her it was a small local community bank, she said good, she does not like big banks. She is going to send me a file with check forms on them, she wants me to print off the checks and send them out to different people throughout the USA and they will deposit the money in their account, keep a percent and send her the balance and for my help in this I would get a percent as well.

This is a nice twist on the scam as they don’t even need to post the check, they will find a dupe in the USA to do it for them, and they rake in the cash. What makes it worse if some patsy falls for it, they are now committing several crimes, some of which are Federal. I can’t see how the Fed’s would let it slide, as the scam is so transparent.

Brazen, aggressive and out of control these scams are all over the internet and now in our IM’s. I assume we will be getting them sent as text messages on our mobile phones soon!

Be afraid, be very afraid!

No comments: