Scam Emails Archive : Generic

Subject: Scamdex, Internet Scambusters Newsletter #287, 6-11-08

From: "ScamBusters Editors" <>

This email with the subject "Scamdex, Internet Scambusters Newsletter #287, 6-11-08" was received in one of Scamdex's honeypot email accounts on Wed, 11 Jun 2008 01:18:15 -0700 and has been classified as a Generic Scam.

The sender was "ScamBusters Editors" <>, although it may have been spoofed.


Internet Scambusters (tm)
The #1 Publication on Internet Fraud

By Scambusters Audri, Jim and Andrea
Issue #287  June 11, 2008


Note 1: Easily change your subscription information by clicking
the link at the very bottom of this newsletter.

Note 2: Please share this newsletter with 3 or 4 of your
friends or colleagues who you think will benefit from it.

Hi Scamdex,

Today we have more excellent advice and stories from
subscribers. We're really pleased with all of the wonderful
suggestions you send -- thank you! You'll find useful ideas

- Credit Card Fees

- Fake Anti-Virus Software

- Contractor Scams

- Puppy Scams

- Travel Scams

- Photography Contest Scams

First, we suggest you check out this week's issue of Scamlines
-- What's New in Scams? -- here.

Next, we want to give you an update on what's going on at

We've had an enormous number of questions from subscribers
about what's really going on with LifeLock recently. There have
been several lawsuits against LifeLock. There are questions
about whether or not LifeLock is actually insurance -- and if
that matters. And much, much more.

To get you answers, Audri again interviewed LifeLock's CEO,
Todd Davis. Here's the interview to give you some answers about
what's happening with LifeLock now...

Then, we recommend you check out the most popular articles from
our other sites during the past week:

Answers to 7 of the Biggest Questions About Capturing the
Moment in Nature Photography: An Interview With Lewis Kemper

Playing the Credit Card Grace Period Game

Make Your Very Own Chocolate Sculpture

Avoid Mistakes When Uploading to a Photo Sharing Site

On to today's advice...

How To Avoid Extra Credit Card Fees and Surcharges

Ginny offers the following tip on avoiding late credit card
fees based on our article in Issue #229:

The easiest way I've found to avoid late fees is to have the
credit card bill paid automatically out of my bank account. It
will be credited to you as paid on the date it is due and most
companies usually don't take the money out of your account
until 1-2 days afterwards.

The other way to make sure they're paid on time is to schedule
your payment online ahead of time and it will be credited on
the day you choose.


Ann writes:

You mention the blank checks that come from credit card
companies and recommend "knowing all the costs."

Did you know that you can also request the company to stop
sending the checks altogether? This also removes those blank
checks from the postal stream where they are subject to

Editors Note: Good point. And if you do receive them, please
remember to shred the blank checks if you don't plan on using
them. You definitely don't want them to fall into the wrong hands.

Protect Yourself from Fake Anti-Virus Software

Malissa offers up an example you may not have heard of yet on
fake software removal related to Issue #232.

This is especially terrifying and has happened to one of our staffers as well:

I work in a university library. While surfing websites on my
work computer earlier this week, I was startled by a popup that
stated [inappropriate adult] material had potentially been

The popup then proceeded with 'threatening' statements that I
could get fired and lose my spouse and my family.

Of course, the fix was to click on the button to get the
'software' to clean it up!

This is the first time a popup of this kind has appeared and it
actually scared me.

I didn't want to get fired or even go through the embarrassing
process of trying to prove I'm innocent But reason took over
and I saw this for what it was -- a scam. Boy, some people will
do anything, won't they?

Thanks so much for publishing the Scambusters newsletter. I
learn something new with almost every issue.

Contractor Scams: How to Avoid "Rent-a-Creep" Schemes

Mike offered some useful insights on our contractors scam

Just a couple of things you missed: In nearly every state,
anything you agree to buy when solicited at your home is
covered by the "Home Solicitation Sales Act," which gives the
consumer 3 days to change their mind.

This is why reputable contractors don't ever want to start work
right away; they wait for this 3-day cooling off period to expire.

Also, the local building department should be called to check
if the work they are selling requires a permit.

No homeowner should ever pull a permit in their own name for
work being done by a contractor. If the contractor asks you to
do this, you can be sure he's a crook.

A competent, independent home inspector, such as an ASHI
member, would be glad to evaluate the problem in your home and
give you an unbiased opinion on what needs to be done. Yes,
that inspector will ask to be paid, but he has no interest in
selling you anything, so he's not going to run the job up to
collect a bigger commission.

ASHI home inspectors work only for the consumer, don't report
to the local government or anyone else, and are not connected
to any contractor. They can be the consumer's best resource,
keeping homeowners out of trouble instead of paying an attorney
after the trouble starts.


Stu offered up another contractor scam:

You wake up early in the morning and hear a bunch of banging on
the roof. You go out and ask what in the world are they doing --
noticing that about half your roof has been torn off.

The guy says is this so and so address? You say no this is such
and such. They say sorry we got the wrong house and start
picking up their stuff to leave.

Now if you want to get this fixed, they'll fix it at a cheaper
rate since they made a mistake. You feel as if you're forced to
pay for a new roof when you didn't need one and you weren't
prepared to pay for one.

More on Puppy Scams

Puppy scams are increasingly popular with scammers and are

Mary offers up some good advice on avoiding being taken by a
puppy scam:

You mention using the White Pages to look for a reputable puppy
breeder in your recent e-mail on avoiding puppy buying scams.

A better source for finding a purebred puppy would be to
contact the American Kennel Club which has a referral service.

Editor's Note: We are also big supporters of the great work
done by dog rescue organizations.

How to Avoid Travel Scams When Vacationing Overseas

Cassandra offers up some good advice on travel scams:

In China, when purchasing from street vendors, give exact
change when possible. Most of the bills they give back are
fake. Tourists should look for the watermarks on the bills.

Editors Note: This is a good practice for any country you may
be in, not just China.

Poetry Scams and Photography Contest Scams

We received more feedback about avoiding photography contest

Neil says:

I'm a professional photographer and one of the problems with
even legitimate photo contests is that the winner gets, say,
$100 (which they probably will), but in entering such a
contest, you may be assigning all copyright to the contest

Many amateurs take incredible photos, either through planning
or luck. Enter your incredible photo, and if the rules say you
are giving away the copyright, you can never use it for
anything; you have signed away all rights to it.

Many people may feel that it's worth $100 to see their image
published -- and that can be very ego-gratifying. But the
upshot is that the contest holder will OWN several hundred
photos that they can do with as they see fit.

So read the rules VERY carefully, and decide accordingly.

Editor's Note: Great advice, Neil. For even more advice, see
the article on our sister site, How To
Avoid Photo Contest Scams.

Time to close -- we're off to take a walk. See you next week.

- Please Check Out These Offers - They Keep Scambusters Free -
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Your New Or Used Car!"

How you can pay less for your new or used car and avoid the
typical car buying blunders almost everyone makes:
ex-dealership manager tells all...

Peter Humleker, the ex-general manager of a popular new car
dealership, exposes the best-kept "insider secrets" on how to
outsmart any car salesman and stop him from shamelessly
siphoning money out of your pockets...

In fact, he can help you become a shrewd car-buying expert in
just a couple of hours!

Here's what two readers have to say about Peter's book:

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    a Nissan Altima 3.5 SL for $250 under invoice. And the
    dealer's invoice was less than the other figures I saw on
    the Internet... Please accept my heartfelt thanks for your
    publication. It saved me thousands of my after tax dollars."
    -- Walter G. Aiello, Ph.D., Manager, Network and
    Information Services, Duke University Medical Center

    "I was a former Finance Manager in the car business and
    got your book mostly out of curiosity. I was pretty
    surprised when I read your section on the Finance
    Department! You certainly didn't hold anything back.

    "You exposed every scam in existence plus some I never
    even knew about. Everyone who reads your book is going
    to thank you for saving them a lot of money.
    -- Jerry Goettig, Former Finance Manager, Southern California

This is a great time to buy a car or truck -- but only if you
know the truth about how NOT to get taken and how to get a
great deal. Visit now for details:


Are Credit Problems Driving You Crazy?

One of the biggest causes of stress and unhappiness in most
people's lives is money -- especially when your debt keeps
rising and the bills never stop. In no time flat, you can be
buried in extra debt just from credit card interest charges
and service fees alone!

But no matter how deeply in debt you are, there still is hope.

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Small Business Owners: Exactly What You Need to Know to
Succeed in Any Economy

Worried about high gas prices and how deeply they'll affect
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costs, no matter what the economy is like?

Discover how a handful of savvy small business owners are
banking big profits by doing what you're not -- even when the
economy is down. Get the full story at:



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