scams

‘Overstock’ Name Is Hot Holiday Hoax

Posted on 12/5/2013 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Bulletin Today | Money & SavingsAmong the most common holiday shopping cons is cybersquatting, when scammers steal or slightly alter the name or website address of a well-known company to engage in rip-offs including identity theft, credit card fraud and sale of counterfeit goods. This holiday season, “Overstock” is certainly not being underutilized by scammers. The Better Business Bureau warns of a “noticeable trend” of phony websites using the word “overstock” somewhere in their domain name, “hoping to fool consumers into thinking they are shopping …

Five Ways Criminals Con You Out of Your Cash

Posted on 12/4/2013 by |AARP Executive Vice President | Comments

Money & SavingsIf you have money, scammers have a way to take it from you. Con artists talk about getting their victims so emotionally charged up that they are unable to think logically. They call it “under the ether,” and it is how they play on hope, fear and empathy to defraud their victims. Find out how to protect yourself from five common scams with staying power. Sweetheart. Savvy scammers do their homework, tailoring their false identity to target their victims, and …

What’s Hot? Cold Weather Scams

Posted on 11/14/2013 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Bulletin Today | Money & SavingsRecent falling temperatures in parts of the U.S. have prompted a new wave of a time-tested power play – fraudsters posing as utility company workers who threaten to shut off your service because of supposedly unpaid bills. The Shutoff Swindle has prompted warnings in recent weeks from utility companies from Maine to Washington state, including in (usually) warmer-weather states such as Texas. Typically, this scam occurs by telephone. Callers claim to be billing representatives from your utility company. They say you’ve …

Fraud Watch Network: Fight ID Theft and Scams

Posted on 11/12/2013 by |AARP Executive Vice President | Comments

Money & SavingsThe con gathers an arsenal of information by being personable and being friendly… the logic goes out the window, the emotion kicks in, now I’ve endeared you to me, now I’m no longer the predator on the phone, I’m Jim from New York.” – Jimmy Edwards, The Con Artist’s Playbook The scam is sometimes deceptively simple, as easy as stealing a credit card offer from your trash. Other times it can be far more complex, like the infamous con preying …

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 …

Reporting Senior Scams Trumps Privacy Laws

Posted on 09/30/2013 by |AARP Blog Author | Comments

Money & SavingsHoping to curb an epidemic of financial abuse against seniors, federal regulators are telling banks and other money managers that they can – and should – report questionable transactions without fear of violating privacy laws. Working with seven other agencies, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued new “guidance” to  financial institutions. It assures them that telling authorities about signs that older customers are falling victim to scams and fraud doesn’t violate federal restrictions on sharing personal information – a long-time concern …