scam alert

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 …

Bogus Bank Calls Are Back

Posted on 12/13/2013 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Bulletin Today | Money & SavingsDon’t “bank” on the authenticity of phone calls or text messages that claim to be from your financial institution, warning that there’s a problem with your account, debit card or credit card. This old scam is back, with a new wave of these bogus bank alerts. In the past week, according to news reports, thousands of people have been targeted in at least five states — Georgia, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota and Missouri. But there could be many more. The scam works …

Vicious New Malware Steals Files Forever

Posted on 10/18/2013 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

TechnologyIt’s always a good idea to back up your computer files. But now, it’s a great idea. An especially nasty form of “ransomware” – known as CryptoLocker – was recently discovered that puts computer users at risk of losing their files forever. Sign up for the AARP Money Matters newsletter In most forms of ransomware, infected computers freeze up and are essentially held hostage until a ransom is paid. One common scheme: False messages claiming to be from the FBI, accusing you …

Government Shutdown Scams — the Latest Gotcha

Posted on 10/15/2013 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Bulletin Today | Money & SavingsThe federal government shutdown has created new opportunities for scammers to revise some tried-and-true schemes — they pose as employees of Uncle Sam at a time when the real ones are on furlough. Sign up for the AARP Money Matters newsletter Some examples: 1. Scammers call warning that because of the shutdown, you need to immediately re-enroll in Medicare or risk losing benefits. You may be asked for personal information that needs “verification” or you may be directed to a website …

Be Aware of “Breast Cancer Awareness” Scams

Posted on 10/14/2013 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Bulletin Today | Money & SavingsOctober is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month – time to think pink. But also take a clue from those theme-hued ribbons and other merchandise. Your desire to support the search for a cure for the second-biggest cause of cancer death among women can be the perfect opening for charity scammers. The same thing can happen when natural disasters and other in-the-news events prompt the opening of hearts and wallets. Sign up for the AARP Money Matters newsletter There are lots of legitimate …

Do Not Fall for “Do Not Call” Scam

Posted on 10/10/2013 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Money & SavingsPerhaps the last nuisance phone call you might expect is from the very government agency that’s trying to halt them… especially if your phone number is among the 209 million already listed on the National Do Not Call Registry. Sign up for the AARP Money Matters newsletter It’s scammers —once again — who are posing as representatives of the Federal Trade Commission or the registry with an offer to enroll a phone number or “confirm” or “renew” an existing listing. …