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merryone

Registered Shopper
Joined
Jun 24, 2008
Messages
6,394
Location
brighton
There's no real need for me to post this, as I'm sure we all know a scam when we see it, but I need to do it for my own cathartic benefit. A couple of days ago an old school friend whom I'm only in touch with on FB excitedly posted that she'd just bought a couple of high end perfumes from the John Lewis clearance sale including an 100ml bottle of Chanel eau de parfum for £27, she said I thought it was a scam at first but it's definitely legitimate as I've received confirmation from them, and she posted a picture of rather dodgy looking email with a tracking number - so come on girls what are you waiting for? Now I work for the company and I know that we don't do crazy sales like that. I checked the website anyway and of course there was nothing of the sort and that the Chanel she'd purportedly purchased for £27 retailed for £136 and was out of stock anyway. What shocks me is that the friend in question has worked in finance for her entire working life, has travelled the world and is the last person on earth one would expect to fall for such an obvious scam. "I thought it was a scam at first" but she allowed herself to part with money before she was able to say that it wasn't - a confirmation email, even the goods arriving on the doorstep makes it no less of a scam, there are fake perfumes everywhere made to look like the real thing and God knows what's in them, dodgy chemicals and horse urine? Nothing you'd want anywhere near your skin"
I replied to her comment in a diplomatic manner - "I've checked out their website and I can't find such an offer" then another friend posted "be careful, there's something not quite right here". Rather than make her look a fool, I private messaged her and told her that the email didn't look right, that again there's no such sale so if I were you I'd go onto their website and check out your account and if you can't find a record of your purchase give c/s a call and they'll be able to confirm. A few hours later, she replied saying thanks I've checked out my account and the order's there so all good. At this stage I was banging my head against the wall as she clearly hadn't gone onto John Lewis's official website but had just gone back onto the scammers site. The telling thing is that when I went onto her FB page, the perfume post had gone. Clearly the penny's dropped but I'm frustrated - yes she might have felt like a bit of a chump, but surely she'd have been better off saying "silly me, I fell for it" and thanking others for trying to warn her and using her experience to warn others. I don't know exactly how much she's lost or the ramifications of her actions - Hopefully she's reported this to her bank/card issuer and stopped her cards at the very least. When will people learn? What frustrates me most is that this woman would rather lie to me than admit for one minute she's been had - the removal of the post is very telling!
 
Scammers rely on the shame/embarrassment of victims and almost-victims shutting their mouths; rather than doing the public-spirited thing and alerting others.
Sadly, it seems folks have to lose life-changing amounts before they will forego shame and pity and make a clean breast of things.
We can all be had by scammers. I’d say it is like an inverse bell curve. It is most likely to succeed when we are young and inexperienced or when we are older and out of step with scammers’ latest wiles.
I got taken in by a holiday scam years ago and lost money I could ill afford and never admitted it. At least if I had there would have been no social media pile-on with derisive comments about my gullibility and foolishness to rub salt in the wounds!
 
Scammers rely on the shame/embarrassment of victims and almost-victims shutting their mouths; rather than doing the public-spirited thing and alerting others.
Sadly, it seems folks have to lose life-changing amounts before they will forego shame and pity and make a clean breast of things.
We can all be had by scammers. I’d say it is like an inverse bell curve. It is most likely to succeed when we are young and inexperienced or when we are older and out of step with scammers’ latest wiles.
I got taken in by a holiday scam years ago and lost money I could ill afford and never admitted it. At least if I had there would have been no social media pile-on with derisive comments about my gullibility and foolishness to rub salt in the wounds!
This happened to a friend of my ex husband. In the early 1990's he fell for one of those free scratch cards that used to fall out of magazines, you know the ones where you always won the top tier prize. Low/mid tier would be filofaxes, gemstones, perfume, walkmans, mini tvs, bicycles etc but the top tier was always a holiday to some far flung destination where the clauses made them impossible to take up. The thing was is that you had to call a premium phone line to register your win and this is where they took a good 5 minutes congratulating you on your win, describing the beautiful holiday and then another 5 minutes going through the T's & C's which would be a small window of dates, an out of reach airport, a minimum of 6 people for obvious reasons this was a non-starter for him, the silly sod asked whether he could have one of the lower tier prizes instead to which they replied "of course" told him they were unable to guarantee what it would be, but all he needed to do is to send them a stamped addressed envelope and a postal order for £1 to cover insurance and he only went ahead and did it!!!! I think he expected to be sent some sort of voucher he'd be able to exchange for one of the prizes. He did receive something - It was a gemstone! A tiny little dark pink nugget of plastic and a piece of paper telling you how to look after your genuine ruby. I'll give him this, he was happy to spread the hilarity of his gullibility and £100 added to his phone bill, he put the offending nugget into his wallet and it became his "party piece"!
 
A number of years ago before I met him Mr V was out with his brother in law. As they left the bowling club they were stopped by a couple of men standing by a van in the carpark. One of the men asked them would they be interested in buying a cheap TV which was part of some bankrupt stock they`d bought from a closed down electrical store ?
Mr V said an outright no but his brother in law asked to see the TV. The guy in the van opened the van rear doors and there were several boxes and he showed them a perfect looking TV. The brother in law asked how much, agreed a price, said he`d buy it. The guy in the van said he`d give him a boxed one which had never been handled as the one he`d shown them was unboxed and well handled.
The brother in law coughed up the readies, put the weighty pristine looking box in the back of his car, drove Mr V home then said he`d head off to his house to set up the new TV.
A short while later Mr V received a phonecall from his brother in law swearing and ranting down the phone, it seems the new TV box contained no TV but was filled with bricks. Mr V said he nearly choked trying not to laugh and the brother in law sped off to the bowling club but the van and the conmen were long gone. Lesson learned, if it sounds too good to be true, then it usually is too good be true !
 
A number of years ago before I met him Mr V was out with his brother in law. As they left the bowling club they were stopped by a couple of men standing by a van in the carpark. One of the men asked them would they be interested in buying a cheap TV which was part of some bankrupt stock they`d bought from a closed down electrical store ?
Mr V said an outright no but his brother in law asked to see the TV. The guy in the van opened the van rear doors and there were several boxes and he showed them a perfect looking TV. The brother in law asked how much, agreed a price, said he`d buy it. The guy in the van said he`d give him a boxed one which had never been handled as the one he`d shown them was unboxed and well handled.
The brother in law coughed up the readies, put the weighty pristine looking box in the back of his car, drove Mr V home then said he`d head off to his house to set up the new TV.
A short while later Mr V received a phonecall from his brother in law swearing and ranting down the phone, it seems the new TV box contained no TV but was filled with bricks. Mr V said he nearly choked trying not to laugh and the brother in law sped off to the bowling club but the van and the conmen were long gone. Lesson learned, if it sounds too good to be true, then it usually is too good be true !
I had a slightly similar experience - There used to be a big market at our local racecourse on bank holiday mondays, I went along one time and we looked around can't remember if I bought anything other than a hotdog, as we were going to leave, right by the exit I saw a big van with the rear doors open with a couple of guys standing in front of them and a large crowd gathered around, I was intrigued so stopped, I was quite near the back and the next item on the agenda was what he called a "ghetto blaster" I could see that it wasn't really big enough to be described as such, but I was in need of a portable radio/cassette player, and even standing at the back the sound was impressive "I'm not asking for £100, I'm not asking for £80, £50 and so on all I want is 25 notes who's in?" I literally dashed down to the front handed over the money and the guy reached into the van and gave me a carrier bag with a box inside. It wasn't until I got home that and opened the box that I discovered that the "cassette part of the deal and the two speakers were on a sticker to make it look funky, in fact what I'd bought was an extremely basic FM radio. To add insult to injury it was mains operated (no lead supplied of course). I happened to have a spare lead so I plugged it in, thankfully I wasn't blown sky high, but I twisted the dial for ages and I just about managed to pick up a couple of fuzzy stations, it was as tinny sounding as anything and a far cry from the one he was demonstrating. Back in the mid 1980's when this happened I could ill afford that sort of money and I was gutted and embarrassed. I laugh about it now - but that certainly doesn't beat the box full of bricks!!!
Going back to MML's point, scammers do rely on shame and embarrassment, and I think in this day and age when scamming is so widespread and publicised even more so, it would make it even less likely for those taken in to admit their mistakes.
 
On the flipside Has anyone bought something that seemed too good to be true and it's exceeded all expectations? I spent a fiver on a Panasonic bread maker in a boot sale. The box was slightly battered, the contents looked brand new, there was still all the leaflets in with it, so I asked the bloke why he was selling it. He told me that he'd bought it for his mum but she didn't want it and that it was just in the way and he wanted shot of it. I took it home and gave it to OH who excitedly decided he'd use it there and then as we already had a cheap entry level bread maker so he had all the necessary ingredients and had been banging on about buying a Panasonic for ages. He did all the necessary, plugged it in and pressed play, and nothing happened, "he said oh well what did you expect? He went to unplug it and bundle it back into the box for disposal but decided to give it one more try, he pressed down harder and kept his finger on the button when it suddenly sprung into action! Stiff button, that's all! We had a good few years service from that machine before he decided to upgrade it. I mean yes, the guy wasn't trying to rip anyone off, despite not telling me that it didn't work, I mean for a fiver you could work that out for yourself really, but it turned out to be the bargain of the century!
 
I think the 1990s saw the start of quite a few scams. I remember all the local shop windows advertising how you could earn money working from home which had something to do with addressing envelopes and another one not sure whether it was part of the same scam was a sort of chain letter thing where you had copy something out and send it to five people and so on. I'm not sure how money was supposed to be earned but I don't think anyone did apart from the person at the top of the pyramid. I never got involved as I had an Avon round and a bit of child minding when I was a stay at home mum. I also remember the piecework scam and I did actually know someone who did that she was supposed to be paid an amount to assemble tiny wooden models, she told me she spent evening after evening and it was really fiddly and that her mother helped her and at the end of it after they'd been collected from her, instead of getting paid, she was told that her work was substandard and that she wasn't getting paid! Of course when she contacted them to complain, she got the no such number tone. I think this was a widespread scam! Of course the work wasn't substandard at all it was just a bunch of shysters getting work done for free!
 
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I work in Cyber Crime and the first thing I noticed about Merryone's initial message was the "dodgy looking email". That's a real giveaway, there's a few things to look out for. I get emails addressed to "marysmith" (not my real name, just using it here) as my name is in my email. A company you had dealings with would use just your first name. Another is to check the 'from' details - they often have long email addresses that bear no relation to the company.

A very important issue is to be careful clicking on a link, this will give fraudsters access to your account and they can install malware. This is often the way in for hackers.

Also emails may demand that you do something urgently, they create panic to make you act instantly and to not check.

Anyone can fall victim to a scam, but we should consider that if an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is a scam. As in the perfume example.

One final tip if anyone is not to use the same password for everything. I used to do this before I got my current job! If scammers get this password they can access all the things that this relates to.
 
I work in Cyber Crime and the first thing I noticed about Merryone's initial message was the "dodgy looking email". That's a real giveaway, there's a few things to look out for. I get emails addressed to "marysmith" (not my real name, just using it here) as my name is in my email. A company you had dealings with would use just your first name. Another is to check the 'from' details - they often have long email addresses that bear no relation to the company.

A very important issue is to be careful clicking on a link, this will give fraudsters access to your account and they can install malware. This is often the way in for hackers.

Also emails may demand that you do something urgently, they create panic to make you act instantly and to not check.

Anyone can fall victim to a scam, but we should consider that if an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is a scam. As in the perfume example.

One final tip if anyone is not to use the same password for everything. I used to do this before I got my current job! If scammers get this password they can access all the things that this relates to.
smehow my password from gmails account got hacked, use complicated password, one off using keypass. I knew because got the email to say password had been changed. Luckily send it to another account and therefore very quick was able to regain control with no issues.

If mine can be hacked then jeez worry for 90% of the population
 
I work in Cyber Crime and the first thing I noticed about Merryone's initial message was the "dodgy looking email". That's a real giveaway, there's a few things to look out for. I get emails addressed to "marysmith" (not my real name, just using it here) as my name is in my email. A company you had dealings with would use just your first name. Another is to check the 'from' details - they often have long email addresses that bear no relation to the company.

A very important issue is to be careful clicking on a link, this will give fraudsters access to your account and they can install malware. This is often the way in for hackers.

Also emails may demand that you do something urgently, they create panic to make you act instantly and to not check.

Anyone can fall victim to a scam, but we should consider that if an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is a scam. As in the perfume example.

One final tip if anyone is not to use the same password for everything. I used to do this before I got my current job! If scammers get this password they can access all the things that this relates to.
Some really sound advice there thanks. I thought the email was dodgy because it was purportedly from the company I work for myself and I know that their emails don't look like that and the way the word "shipment" was used instead of "delivery". However, once it's got this far it's too late, your money's already been taken, and it can only get worse if you click on the links (a point you illustrated above). Again as you said, if it seems too good to be true, it usually is. It is as easy as pie to double check, had she opened the John Lewis website in a separate window she'd have immediately seen that this fragrance "giveaway" didn't exist, it would've just a few minutes to double check. The other thing to watch out for is offers popping up on social media, from normally reputable companies, saying that these offers are only available via this their Facebook/Instagram/Twitter page. Again it's not difficult to find the real page and see that it's different from the one that you were on before. Fairly recently a page popped up supposedly from Wilko's advertising a warehouse clearance eg patio sets going for £20. Smaller items king size duvets and the like going for silly prices like £3. I didn't believe it for a minute but I looked up their name and found their official page and of course it showed nothing of the sort. The page was very well done though I have to say, these scammers go to an awful lot of trouble. Going back to if it seems too good to be true - don't just take that statement at face value (even though it doesn't hurt to do so) actually think - WHY would John Lewis sell a bottle of perfume that retails at £136 for £27?, why would Louis Vuitton sell you a handbag that would normally set you back 4K for £40? I think you'd be hard pushed to find an answer!!!
 
Some really sound advice there thanks. I thought the email was dodgy because it was purportedly from the company I work for myself and I know that their emails don't look like that and the way the word "shipment" was used instead of "delivery". However, once it's got this far it's too late, your money's already been taken, and it can only get worse if you click on the links (a point you illustrated above). Again as you said, if it seems too good to be true, it usually is. It is as easy as pie to double check, had she opened the John Lewis website in a separate window she'd have immediately seen that this fragrance "giveaway" didn't exist, it would've just a few minutes to double check. The other thing to watch out for is offers popping up on social media, from normally reputable companies, saying that these offers are only available via this their Facebook/Instagram/Twitter page. Again it's not difficult to find the real page and see that it's different from the one that you were on before. Fairly recently a page popped up supposedly from Wilko's advertising a warehouse clearance eg patio sets going for £20. Smaller items king size duvets and the like going for silly prices like £3. I didn't believe it for a minute but I looked up their name and found their official page and of course it showed nothing of the sort. The page was very well done though I have to say, these scammers go to an awful lot of trouble. Going back to if it seems too good to be true - don't just take that statement at face value (even though it doesn't hurt to do so) actually think - WHY would John Lewis sell a bottle of perfume that retails at £136 for £27?, why would Louis Vuitton sell you a handbag that would normally set you back 4K for £40? I think you'd be hard pushed to find an answer!!!
You're right, scammers go to a lot of trouble these days. It's like we're all so desperate for it to be true that we don't want to check (usually so easy to do this). With the Wilko example you gave, I'm assuming it was when they were going under so people would believe that they were just trying to shift their remaining stock.

The BBC have daytime programmes on scammers, they're very good and give lots of tips. I used to get lots of scam emails from people who have left me millions of pounds. Some people just believe what they read and fall for it. And if I saw a Louis Vuitton handbag for £40 it's either a fake or stolen!
 
smehow my password from gmails account got hacked, use complicated password, one off using keypass. I knew because got the email to say password had been changed. Luckily send it to another account and therefore very quick was able to regain control with no issues.

If mine can be hacked then jeez worry for 90% of the population
The thing to remember with passwords is that anything can get hacked. But the more complicated it is the less likely it will be hacked. So glad yours got sorted quickly with the change of password email.
 
It is so easy to be caught out these days.

I remember pre Covid, there used to be a makeup party, go to someone's home, and they sold bundles of makeup. A friend went to a MAC party, I said no way in hell do MAC hold these parties, but did not believe me. Came back with two full size mascaras, false eyelashes, eyeliner and lipstick for £10. Then said the makeup was rubbish.

If you hover over the sender in an email, there is a drop-down box, it can be a good way to tell about the sender. I have to write my passwords down in a diary as I forget what I change them too. We have ads on the bus shelter at the moment about online security, showing tips for passwords. Pink nail polish, headphones, tattoo, was one it showed as an example.
 
I work in Cyber Crime and the first thing I noticed about Merryone's initial message was the "dodgy looking email". That's a real giveaway, there's a few things to look out for. I get emails addressed to "marysmith" (not my real name, just using it here) as my name is in my email. A company you had dealings with would use just your first name. Another is to check the 'from' details - they often have long email addresses that bear no relation to the company.

A very important issue is to be careful clicking on a link, this will give fraudsters access to your account and they can install malware. This is often the way in for hackers.

Also emails may demand that you do something urgently, they create panic to make you act instantly and to not check.

Anyone can fall victim to a scam, but we should consider that if an offer seems too good to be true, it probably is a scam. As in the perfume example.

One final tip if anyone is not to use the same password for everything. I used to do this before I got my current job! If scammers get this password they can access all the things that this relates to.
Anything I don't like the look of is deleted. I don't even look in Spam and empty the folder immediately.

I have Sophos and a VPN installed on my phone and tablet and I have an encrypted email.
I just think if I've deleted anything important it will pop up again or I will be contacted by phone.
We once got a phone call supposedly from Microsoft asking if I could get onto the computer as there was
a problem. I gave the phone to hubby who informed them that he worked for Microsoft and wasn't aware of anything wrong. The phone went down straight away. By the way he didn't work for Microsoft but he was a Network engineer in the NHS.
 
Anything I don't like the look of is deleted. I don't even look in Spam and empty the folder immediately.

I have Sophos and a VPN installed on my phone and tablet and I have an encrypted email.
I just think if I've deleted anything important it will pop up again or I will be contacted by phone.
We once got a phone call supposedly from Microsoft asking if I could get onto the computer as there was
a problem. I gave the phone to hubby who informed them that he worked for Microsoft and wasn't aware of anything wrong. The phone went down straight away. By the way he didn't work for Microsoft but he was a Network engineer in the NHS.
I was once called (supposedly) by 02, my phone provider. It came up on the screen as being 02. He spoke about offering me a better deal which I was looking for. However I was in John Lewis at the time and obviously didn't want to deal with it then, I said call back later. However he was very insistent I should do it then and there, I wasn't comfortable about it and ended the call. I now know that cyber criminals can change the caller ID to another company's name, its called spoofing, to make you trust who you're speaking too. Didn't know that then.

Patsy, you sound pretty savvy with the VPM. I love the Microsoft story, we used to get loads of those calls when we had a landline. My mum, who was in her late 70s, knew they were a scam so she used to play the dotty old lady routine and annoy them so they put the phone down! And once I got an obviously scam call so I said "you'd better speak to my husband when he gets home, he's a chief inspector in the fraud squad"🤣. They put the phone down pretty quickly! As I'm not married it was a naughty lie.
 
It is so easy to be caught out these days.

I remember pre Covid, there used to be a makeup party, go to someone's home, and they sold bundles of makeup. A friend went to a MAC party, I said no way in hell do MAC hold these parties, but did not believe me. Came back with two full size mascaras, false eyelashes, eyeliner and lipstick for £10. Then said the makeup was rubbish.

If you hover over the sender in an email, there is a drop-down box, it can be a good way to tell about the sender. I have to write my passwords down in a diary as I forget what I change them too. We have ads on the bus shelter at the moment about online security, showing tips for passwords. Pink nail polish, headphones, tattoo, was one it showed as an example.
Yes, hovering over the 'from' box is good. The password advice they gave is good, I use three random words with a number at the front and a symbol at the end. Generally, the longer the password the longer it will take to be hacked. And some people use the word 'Password' as their password! It's good to change important ones every few months.

The MAC make up story is interesting. Would be so easy to check if the party was genuine.
 
I was scammed out of over £3K from my bank account by a method I've NEVER heard about before or since. I did get refunded eventually.

BACKGROUND - - I had 2 bank accounts at the time. To log into ONE of them needed one of those machines you put your card into and enter a pin, then was given a code which you had to use to log in.

The other one did NOT use this card machine. When I went onto their website to log in, it asked me to use the machine, as above. As I was used to doing this, I didn't twig that it was the wrong bank for requiring this, so I followed my normal procedure (for the other bank).

Within seconds, my bank had been emptied, including my arranged overdraft, so I actually lost a lot more than was actually in my account!

I realised within seconds as I have email alerts set up, so I got one telling me my balance was lower than my alert limit.

I reported it immediately, and after lots of argy-bargy, the bank refunded me, BUT wouldn't have done so if I didn't have valid anti-virus on my PC.
 
I was scammed out of over £3K from my bank account by a method I've NEVER heard about before or since. I did get refunded eventually.

BACKGROUND - - I had 2 bank accounts at the time. To log into ONE of them needed one of those machines you put your card into and enter a pin, then was given a code which you had to use to log in.

The other one did NOT use this card machine. When I went onto their website to log in, it asked me to use the machine, as above. As I was used to doing this, I didn't twig that it was the wrong bank for requiring this, so I followed my normal procedure (for the other bank).

Within seconds, my bank had been emptied, including my arranged overdraft, so I actually lost a lot more than was actually in my account!

I realised within seconds as I have email alerts set up, so I got one telling me my balance was lower than my alert limit.

I reported it immediately, and after lots of argy-bargy, the bank refunded me, BUT wouldn't have done so if I didn't have valid anti-virus on my PC.
Never heard of that one! Glad you got your money back.
 
The thing to remember with passwords is that anything can get hacked. But the more complicated it is the less likely it will be hacked. So glad yours got sorted quickly with the change of password email.

but mine was complicated the usual mixture, I have no idea how it happened ... it said the login was was from Kent as well, though IP's can be spoofed. All fine since, no money came from any of the accounts but I work partly in network security ...

I tell my wife and daughter anything suspicious come to me straightaway and thats working well, daughter is nearly 18 and is tech savvy that way. Imagine parents with lower understanding or frankly dont care ?

Of course I find that BBC prog with ethical hackers to get these people immensely fascinating and satisfying ... presume something you either do or know about ?
 

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