Scams by Mail: I f You Think It's Too Good to be True...

wild_rose_of_texas(z8b TX)November 25, 2007

I received a letter a few days ago, that was pretty convincing, even to my jaded, suspicious old eyes. But when I thought I smelled a rat, sure enough, there was a dead rodent just around the corner!

Here's how it was supposed to work: the scammer sent me a letter with a very real looking check for 2498.00 inside, with instructions to call this phone number to verify my name, address, etc., and to deposit their check and use those funds to wire back to them that ammount to cover the taxes and surcharges on the total winnings of 72,000.00. When they received my wire transfer, they would then send me the balance of sixty something thousand dollars by transfer back into my account, but, I was instructed to be cool and confidential, keep it all hush-hush until after it was completed so I would not attract undue attention by my local media....

I spent some time this afternoon looking up the companies involved and they do not seem to exist, or at least, not these exact titles of companies, and not in the exact towns where they are listed. And the email address I was supposed to contact is a gmail account. I am pretty sure that a real sweepstakes company would have contacted me by certified mail, and would have had some very clear contact information on their correspondence!

Beware, folks! There are lots of unscrupulous people in the world that are dying to separate us from our hard earned money.

Allison, the disgusted.

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petaloid(SoCal 10a/24)

Sorry, Allison.

You were smart not to respond, and smart to investigate.

It takes some time for a deposited check to clear -- the crooks count on that. By the time it bounces, you've wired them your own money and it's too late to get it back.

Thank you for warning us, too. I had seen this kind of thing in an e-mail, but didn't know to watch for it in the regular mail.

    Bookmark   November 25, 2007 at 8:04PM
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wild_rose_of_texas(z8b TX)

You are most welcome for the warning, for that is my exact intent. It would have been so easy to trustingly take that letter and check at face value, cash it or follow their instructions. But by the time you found out it was a bad check, they could have cleaned out your accounts!

I worry about older people getting scammed like this. In my line of work I second and third guess everything and everybody. Suspicion in a byword for my occupation. But millions of innocents still live in America, and there are not enough WatchDogs to protect them all. If any one of us finds something of this nature, we need to tell everyone about it, and get it investigated. My letter and check will be heading to the Postmaster of our town tomorrow afternoon.

Allison

    Bookmark   November 25, 2007 at 10:39PM
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