fraud

Powerball Scam: ‘Unclaimed’ Prize Claims Casing You for Future Fraud

Posted on 04/2/2014 by | AARP Blog Author | Comments

Bulletin Today | Money & SavingsJust as sweepstakes scam season kicks off — these prize lies tend proliferate in spring through summer — fraudsters have conceived a clever new con. In random telephone calls, crooks claim there are “unclaimed” Powerball prizes that you can win by picking random numbers. Do that, officials say, and you may get a follow-up phone call alleging that your numbers won a lower-level prize of a new car and/or a boatload of cash. But know this: “They seem to be ‘casing’ the consumers …

IRS Watchdog: Impostor Phone Scam Largest Ever

Posted on 03/21/2014 by | AARP Blog Author | Comments

Bulletin Today | Money & SavingsFrom its infancy several months ago, this was no typical telephone scam “phishing” for personal information. These crooks, posing as IRS agents, already had some of it — including the last four digits of the Social Security number of those whom they called. And perhaps that explains, at least in part, why it’s since grown to become the “the largest scam of its kind we have ever seen,” the IRS inspector general said Thursday. At least 20,000 taxpayers have been contacted …

Spring Cleanout? Beware of Seasonal Scams

Posted on 03/21/2014 by | AARP Blog Author | Comments

Bulletin Today | Money & SavingsAfter a polar-vortexing bear of a winter, spring has sprung (finally!) — at least according to the calendar. So now’s the time to prepare for scammers who spring into action, trying these perennial ploys: Home Repair Scams They may promise deals on asphalt paving, roof work or other “needed repairs” they happen to spot from their pickups or by going door to door. But beware of any “con”-tractors who then request upfront payment under the guise of having to buy materials; …

Fending Off Online Fraud

Posted on 03/19/2014 by | AARP Blog Author | Comments

Money & Savings | TechnologyEric Schneidewind, AARP Board Member There is no question about it: Online scams are growing in number and complexity. I’ve seen them in my email account. I’ve read about them in AARP publications. And I’ve heard about them through the work of fraud fighters in my state, Michigan. Some of them are truly disturbing. One in particular struck close to home, though it didn’t happen to me, fortunately. You hear about people being emailed and told that a loved one …

Ponzi Victims Can Sue, Supreme Court Says

Posted on 03/11/2014 by | Legal Grounds | Comments

Bulletin TodayIn 2012, Robert Allen Stanford was convicted of running a Ponzi scheme that bilked investors to the tune of $7 billion. While that might be only a fraction of the $65 billion that Bernard Madoff got away with, it’s still about 10 percent of New York City’s budget for 2013. Stanford was sentenced to 110 years in prison, but his victims demanded more than just jail time. While they couldn’t sue Stanford directly, they could, they argued, sue the firms …

Online Fraud: Are You Next?

Posted on 03/5/2014 by | AARP Blog Author | Comments

Bulletin Today | Money & SavingsThe difference between computer users who get scammed and those who don’t often comes down to a simple checklist: In just-released research, AARP identifies 15 particular behaviors, life situations and knowledge attributes that significantly increase vulnerability to online fraud. The kicker: Nearly 1 in 5 American adults — roughly 34 million people — engage in at least seven of them. These eye-opening findings are pooled from detailed surveys of more than 11,000 adults across the U.S., comparing the online actions, behaviors and life experiences …