All posts by Carrie Kost

The Technology Blog

Multi-Level Marketing Work From Home Jobs

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Multi-Level Marketing Work From Home Jobs

Last week we talked about Work From Home Job Scams – how to spot and avoid them so you can have success in your job search. There are many employment options that provide the ability to work from home, but we did leave one type of home employment out. We think it deserves its own post.

These work from home jobs are seemingly perfect! They offer all the best advantages; the ability to create your own flexible schedule, the promise of unlimited monthly income, and a clear action plan provided by the company. You’re able to change your life as an independent sales representative for reputable multi-level marketing (MLM) company.

We’ve heard the sales pitch from a family member, friend, co-worker, or even a random stranger at the gym. They’ve got a life-changing, one-of-a-kind product that we’ve got to try! And, if we like it, they can tell us how to make money selling it…

 

Multi-Level-Marketing-Work-From-Home-Jobs

Multi-Level Marketing Work From Home Jobs

Legitimate Multi-Level Marketing (MLM) Companies vs. Pyramid Schemes

Though some people may argue it, not all multi-level marketing companies are pyramid schemes. But, before you join up with Mary Kay, Herbalife, Beautycounter or any of the other MLM companies out there, know what you’re getting into. To be successful in any venture takes hard work and dedication. Any company promising thousands of dollars for little or no work is making empty promises.

 

  • Normal Distribution – In normal distribution products come from a manufacturer and are handled and sold on by wholesalers and distributors to retailers and finally to consumers. Consumers purchase the products based on value and money moves up the line back to the manufacturer.

 

Manufacturer → Wholesaler → Distributor → Retailer → Consumer← Money ← → Value →

  • Legit MLM Distribution – The MLM distribution model takes out the “middle-man” in the distribution chain. There is a manufacturer with a product and a MLM company creates a direct-sales model to get that product to consumers. In the model, money flows up the line to the manufacturer and value is passed down the line to the consumer.

Manufacturer → MLM Co. → Upper Level → Mid. Level → Newest → Consumers← Money ← → Value →

 

  • Pyramid Schemes – Pyramid schemes use the MLM model to dupe unsuspecting people and investors. They have all the levels of distribution, the promise of success, a great product that’s easy to get behind, and a clear strategy for their independent sales representatives. But the big problem is that there is no value coming down the line to the consumer. There is either a product consumers don’t buy or no product at all. It’s a model that depends on people buying the product themselves and developing their “down-line” or getting new people to buy-in and become members.

CEO or Board → Upper Level → Mid. Level → Newest → Newest → Consumers?← Money ← Money ← Money ← → Value? →

How To Spot A Pyramid Scheme

  • The best way to spot a pyramid scheme is to trust your gut. “Too good to be true” promises, results, or products should be a dead give away. Some products are better than others, but results that border on the miraculous…I don’t think so.
  • Do your research. There are great resources out there to check out business, such as the Better Business Bureau (BBB), the Direct Selling Association (DSA), and numerous articles like this blog about MLM companies.
  • What percentage of their product sales are from non-member customers buying and reordering product? A life in sales is hard when customers aren’t buying the product and repeat customers are rare.
  • What percent of the company’s sales are to non-member customers? If the only people buying are people who are supposed to be selling it, you know you’ll truly be “spending money to make money.”

We’re here to help protect you from scams and identity theft! Subscribe to our blog, and stay informed with our email newsletter, packed with tech and cybersecurity tips and news. Scroll to the footer of our website to sign up and receive this free resource each month.

Work From Home Job Scams

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Work From Home Job Scams

So you want to work from home. The thought of working full or part-time from home is appealing to many of us: not having to rush out the door to beat traffic, no need to take a vacation day when the kids have a snow day or are home from school, the ability to make work fit your schedule, or maybe it’s for extra money to pay off debts or save for vacation. Whatever the motivation to work from home, there are many great opportunities in today’s job market. Knowing which opportunities are legitimate and which are scams can be tricky to navigate.

Work-From-Home-Job-Scams

Work From Home Job Scams

Working From Home

With better technology, time tracking apps, and online capabilities more employers are offering work from home positions than ever before. It not only helps attract younger people to their company, but it also cuts down on their expenses (if your employees work from home you don’t need a big fancy office). Some employers are even offering incentive programs where employees earn days to work from home.

There’s also secret shopping, editing, product reviewing, blogging and countless other opportunities to work from home that don’t have the “corporate” structure so many of us are accustomed to. You know people work from home. You know people are successful that work from home. How do you make that your reality? How do you find that perfect work from home job?

Search: Work From Home Job

There isn’t a magic strategy to finding a work from home job. It takes research, planning, and patience. The typical job search, application and interview process applies to work from home jobs. However, scammers have targeted the work from home job seeker because most people are looking for a flexible second-income or aren’t able to commit to a set job schedule (think stay-at-home-moms) and they don’t have the experience or knowledge to navigate the work from home job search. Work from home job seekers typically fall prey to scammers and fraudsters because they don’t know how to spot the scam.

4 Ways to Spot Work From Home Job Scams

  • Pay to Work – Scammers and fraudsters set up fraudulent company websites offering opportunities to work from home where all you have to do is set up a profile and pay a fee to be a part of the organization. You set up a profile and pay the fee, but nothing comes from it except additional attempts to scam you. This scam is often seen with Secret or Mystery Shopper positions. If you’re looking for an opportunity in this field check out the Mystery Shopping Providers Association (MSPA) to find legitimate businesses and employment opportunities.
  • Asking for Personally Identifiable Information – You’re prompted to enter personally identifiable information (such as your social security number) on the initial job application or during account creation. Reputable and legitimate employers only ask for this type of information after a successful application and interview processes and an offer of employment is contingent upon a successful background check
  • Perform a Test Service – Scammers will ask you ask you to perform a simple task to under the guise of determining suitability and if you like the type of work required. In the most common scam, fraudsters send you a check and ask you to deposit it into your personal checking account and then perform a simple wire transfer. If the check is for $350 they instruct you to wire $200 and you keep the $150. The catch is you have to deposit the check and do the wire transfer on the same day. Unfortunately, the check is fake and now your on the hook for everything.
  • Too Good To Be True Offer – We’ve all seen and heard the ads “make thousands of dollars a month and never leave your home!” These ads are designed to reel us in, but there is always a catch. Ignore these and keep searching, the perfect job is out there!

Searching and applying for jobs is stressful. Don’t let that stress turn to panic by falling for cyber fraud and scams. Take your time, research the companies you’re applying to, and protect yourself.

 

A New Year’s Resolution Fail

By | Cyber Security, Email, Uncategorized | No Comments

A New Year’s Resolution Fail

So your New Year’s resolution didn’t go as planned, don’t feel bad. When making or breaking a habit most people will stumble along the way. But what do we do after it goes from New Year’s resolution to New Year’s bust?

A-New-Year’s-Resolution-Fail

A New Year’s Resolution Fail

The Automatic Monthly Payment Catch

“Getting in shape” or “losing weight” are two common resolutions. Starting in December fitness clubs and gyms start their advertising campaigns to attract members, they know that the vast majority of new members will sign up in the next two months as they plan their New Year’s resolution. In the ads you’ll notice that more time is spent talking about rates, sign up fees, and easy monthly payments than there is about the services of the gym. With low or no sign up fee and easy automatic withdrawal payments of $10-15, gyms make it incredibly easy and affordable to join. But what happens after the initial fire to get in shape burns out? We miss one day, then another. A week goes by and we tell ourselves “next week I’ll go.” One week leads to another, leads to another, and the next thing you know a month has gone by and our resolution has been forgotten till next year. You may have stopped going, but that doesn’t mean you’ve stopped paying for it.
Did you know most people don’t remember to stop an automatic payment until one to two payments after they’ve stopped using the service? Remember to cancel automatic payments when you decide not to use the service. People lose money by paying for unused services all too often.

First Month Free Catch

While we’re on the topic of automatic monthly payments, it’s a good time to review “first month free” and “free trial” ads. Companies often use these ads to get people to use and then stay with their services. Usually when you sign up for the these free or trial periods you have to hand over your personal information and credit card number. Be Careful! Read the fine print before you enter you information! Many companies will automatically charge you after 30 days, whether or not you used their program or services during the free trial period. Set a reminder in your calendar to cancel or continue with the company after the free trial period. Rarely will the company send you a reminder that your free trial is coming to an end.

Look Before You Click

As always, check links and websites before clicking on them and entering any personally identifiable information. Cybercriminals know that people are looking to “lose pounds quickly” and for the “best home workouts” and set up fake ads to trick you into giving them your information.

Your first New Year’s resolution may not have gone the way you wanted. Make “being cybersecurity savvy” your new resolution.

Top Cybersecurity Threats To Your Business

By | Cyber Security, Uncategorized | No Comments

Top Cybersecurity Threats To Your Business

Maintaining a proactive approach to network and cybersecurity is the best practice for businesses. During 2018 we went through many of the scams and security threats that business face and steps that you can take to prevent becoming a victim. As your business looks to grow and achieve new goals in 2019, let’s review some of the most prevalent scams and security threats your business will face. Knowing the threats your business faces helps you to take the proactive steps necessary to protect it.

Top-Cybersecurity-Threats-To-Your-Business

Top Cybersecurity Threats To Your Business

Have Cyber Criminals Targeted Your Business

Too many small to medium sized businesses think that by “keeping their heads down” they won’t be targeted by malicious attacks and cyber criminals. They think that their company doesn’t have the information or capital that cyber criminals or after. Unfortunately, neither of these assumptions are correct, as so many businesses discover. Cyber criminals and fraudsters are equal opportunity criminals and they don’t discriminate due to the size of your business.

The Cyber Threats You Face

  1. Phishing Scams – Did you know 75% of organizations are targets of a phishing scam every single day? Phishing scams don’t have a followed template, but the goal is always the same: compromise your business’ security and information. There are many ways to build a defense and develop good business practices to protect you and your business from phishing attacks. To learn more, check out Protect Your Business From Phishing Scams  and Defend Your Business Against Phishing Attacks .
  2. Business Email Compromise (BEC) Scams – BEC scams account for some of the most high-profile and costly cyber crimes. In July of 2018, the FBI reported that total global losses to BEC scams was over $12.5 billion (October 2013-May 2018). BEC scams typically rely on advanced social engineering tactics and bypassing your company’s security measures by targeting the weakest link of cyber security, the human element. Read Ceo Fraud Scams and Why They Are Successful  to learn more.
  3. Ransomware – Ransomware is a malicious attack where the cybercriminal encrypts your data and then demands a ransom payment to get your data back. Ransomware attacks affect business in every industry and of all sizes. Today, the average ransom payment is $500, but depending on the organization and the type of information that is being held hostage, the ransom payment can be much higher. Read more about ransomware attacks here .
  4. Cloud Compromise Threats – As more of our business information is stored or shared on the cloud, the threats have increased as well. From dealing with vendors and quick file transfers to staying in touch with your off-site team members, cloud services have made doing business in a mobile world a whole lot easier. Working on public wifi and weak passwords pose the largest threats so review How To Create Strong Passwords and protect your business on the cloud.
  5. Cyber-Mining & Cryptojacking – 2018 saw the rise of this particular cybercrime. Cybercriminals hijack your computer by infecting it with malware, they then harness your computer’s processing for their own purposes. Experts believe criminal hijacking of computers will see a significant increase in 2019, especially for the mining of cryptocurrencies. Learn more about cryptojacking and protect your business.

To learn more about the cyber security threats your business faces and check your business’ preparedness through a No-Cost System Audit, contact Pros 4 Technology today. Your trusted managed IT services provider and cyber security specialist.

Top 5 Reasons To Use Managed IT Services

By | Business Network Security, Cyber Security | No Comments

Top 5 Reasons To Use Managed IT Services

2019 is officially here and it’s the time to make (and try to stick to) resolutions. For businesses, January is a time for looking back on the year that was and for looking forward to the year that will be. This process typically centers around revenue, efficiency, how to grow, and ways to save. For most small to medium sized businesses, how IT fits into this big picture can be a headache or just downright confusing.

Top-5-Reasons-To-Use-Managed-IT-Services

Top 5 Reasons To Use Managed IT Services

Most large businesses have their own IT department that keeps their network, software, and cyber security up-to-date and running smoothly. Another, less glamorous, aspect of IT is keeping systems up-to-date with regulations and cyber security laws. How businesses handle their customers or clients information and the steps they take to protect it are governed by regulations and businesses that fail to follow these regulations leave themselves open to liability lawsuits. For small to medium sized businesses that “troubleshoot on the fly,” these regulations are sometimes unknown and therefore not followed.

How Managed IT Services Can Help Your Small to Medium Sized Business

For most small to medium sized businesses, the cost of having a fulltime employee(s) handling IT services is too high or there is simply not enough for them to do to justify the position. What happens without IT support is that a owner, manager or other tech-savvy employee usually assumes the role and does the updating and troubleshooting when it comes up. While this may work for a short period of time, in today’s world of advanced cyber-security threats stop-gap methods leave your business susceptible to cyber attacks and network failures. When you work with most Managed Service Providers you’re able to set up an IT support and service plan that fits your needs and budget.

Top 5 Reasons Your Business Needs Managed IT Services

 

  1. Cost of Professional IT Services – Using managed IT services allows you to set up a plan that uniquely fits your business and needs. You don’t pay for services you don’t need or use. Most managed service providers also have monthly or yearly rates, allowing you to set cost and business expenses. One other benefit, is that managed services help reduce your risk of network failures, again, reducing the cost of doing business.
  2. Access to Professional IT Services – Since most small to medium businesses aren’t able to justify having a full-time IT professional on the payroll they often leave themselves and business open to cyber threats and networks disasters. When using a managed service provider, you have access to highly trained IT professionals that you wouldn’t otherwise have access to. With managed services your business has access to IT professionals just like larger companies, which helps your business compete.
  3. Stay Up-To-Date With New Technology – IT professionals stay in the loop with all the new technology, apps, and software. They keep your business informed of cost-effective solutions and upgrades that you may otherwise not know of.
  4. Cyber-Security & Reducing Risks – There are a myriad of cyber and network risks that face you business. From compliance and network updates to phishing scams and employee error, managed service providers help defend your business from the daily threats it encounters; helping to eliminate downtime and saving our business money.
  5. Letting You Focus On Your Business – Unless your business is IT, you probably didn’t start your business so you could spend all your time focused on your network. Managed services can eliminate all those extra hours you and your employees spend on network issues allowing you to spend more of your work day focused the business of doing business.

 

Pros 4 Technology – Managed IT Services

Take your business into 2019 with Managed IT Services. At Pros 4 Technology we have training and experience to handle your business’ IT needs. Contact us today to get started with a No-Cost Network Audit. Let’s work together to achieve your business’ goals.

Time To Upgrade Your Wallet

By | Cyber Security, Identity Theft, Scams | No Comments

Time To Upgrade Your Wallet

We’ve all seen the commercials of people zooming through the checkout line with a simple “tap” of their credit card. You don’t have time to waste with swiping, inserting, and pin numbers. A simple “tap” and you’re on your way. It may make your shopping experience a breeze, but like all new banking technology scammers have found a way to exploit it.

How-To-Protect-Your-Identity & Credit Card

How To Protect Your Identity & Credit Card

The Traditional Pickpocket

In the 2015 film, Focus, there’s a great scene that shows a team of pickpockets easily separating people from their possessions. When we think of a “pickpocket” we probably think of some slight-of-hand work, misdirection, or an impish character straight out of a Charles Dickens novel. In today’s tech-savvy age, pickpockets don’t need any of these refined skills. All they need is a high-tech radio scanner and to be close enough to you to pick up the radio frequency emitted by your “tap and go” credit card. The technology of “tap and go” credit cards is known as Radio Frequency Identification Detection or RFID.  

How Radio Scanner Pickpocketing Works

It’s really quite simple and almost undetectable when it happens, making it a low-risk operation for a criminal. Your “tap and go” credit card emits a radio frequency that communicates your card information, this is how your card information passes to the credit card reader at the store. What criminals have discovered is that by using a radio frequency scanner they can steal your credit card information; card number, expiration date, security code, and the name on the card. All they have to do is have the scanner hidden on their person and get close enough for the scanner to pick up the frequency of the card.

How To Protect Your Identity & Credit Card

If you’ve ever read a travel guide book, one of the top ways they give for avoiding pickpockets is to conceal your documents, cash and checks in a travel belt wallet that can be hidden inside your shirt or pants. Essentially, it’s the same concept when it comes to protecting your identity and “tap and go” credit card from electronic pickpockets. There are several brands and styles of RFID blockers including wallets, purses and individual holders. Simply keep your “tap and go” credit in a RFID blocking case and criminals will not be able to electronically pickpocket you.

Not sure if your card is RFID enabled? The next time you’re in a store that is set up for “tap and go”, give it a try, but tP4he best way to be sure is to call your credit card company or bank and to ask.  

Defend Your Business Against Phishing Attacks

By | Business Network Security, Cyber Security | No Comments

Defend Your Business Against Phishing Attacks

We face cyber phishing attacks everyday. Most of us can spot the emails that come through our personal email accounts. The rich relative we never knew about, but wants to leave us “millions” if we only pay a small legal handling fee. The “too-good-to-be-true” sales and coupons that we need to download. But what about in our work and business life? What threat is posed by phishing attacks?

How-To-Defend-Your-Business-Against-Phishing-Attacks

How To Defend Your Business Against Phishing Attacks

Sophisticated Cyber Phishing Attacks

Phishing Attacks are one of the most common ways cyber-criminals infiltrate businesses. When it comes to gaining access to company information or using ransomware (malicious software that is used to hold a business network hostage until a ransom is paid), cybercriminals use advanced, sophisticated methods that aren’t easy to spot. These types of attacks are known as Advanced Persistent Threats, or APT.

What Are Advanced Persistent Threats?

Advanced Persistent Threat is the methodology behind sophisticated cyber-criminals. It is cyber-criminals playing the “long game.” Most of these types of attacks focus on particular businesses or entities and are not random. They are a culmination of research and the victim’s ability and willingness to pay. The best way to understand all the different facets of Advanced Persistent Threats is to talk about protecting your business from them at the same time.

How To Avoid Becoming A Victim of Business Phishing Scams

  1. Know Your Information – Do your employees know what information they can and cannot access? Do they know the value of the information? Do they respect current policies and procedures? Performing routine Risk Assessments will help you better understand the nature of the information your employees have access to and help you develop policies and plans to protect it. If your company handles large quantities of personally identifiable information or financial information of clients and customers, cyber-criminals will know it and makes your business more of a target. Make sure your employees know what your company policies are and the consequences for not following them.
  2. Keep Your Network Strong – You have all the bells and whistles you need to keep your network safe, or so you think. When was the last time you had your system tested? Having your network and its security tested by an expert can help find weaknesses that need to be addressed. Know which employees have access to what information. Audit positions and roles on an ongoing basis so that employees have access only to the information they need to do their jobs. By controlling and monitoring these access points, you’re adding layers of protection against phishing attacks.
  3. The Human Side of Network Security – With these Advanced Persistent Threats, cybercriminals are researching you, your employees, and your business. They’re looking for a way in. Oversharing on social media sites is one common way cyber-criminals gain information about your company structure and possible ways of constructing a successful phishing attack. Make sure your employees, especially upper-management, are aware of the threats posed by sharing company information on personal social media accounts. Training your employees on proper information sharing is key.
  4. Cyber Security Rules Everyone Should Follow
    • Check links and double check before you click. Take time to be sure of the source and the download. When people rush through tasks mistakes happen.
    • If you receive a phone call, text or email scam, report it! By reporting it you are making sure your colleagues and coworkers are on the alert.
    • Don’t be afraid to double check a request. Always err on the side of caution and make sure an information request is coming from a legitimate person who is authorized to receive the information.
    • Always have policies and procedures that are clear and concise. Too often business fall prey to phishing attacks because of personnel not following or understanding what company policy is.

Keep your business is safe from cyber phishing attacks. Contact us today to learn how we can help.

Vishing Scams

By | Scams, Smartphones & Tablets | No Comments

Vishing Scams

There are so many different types of cyber-scams out there. Over the last few months we’ve made it our mission to keep you safe by providing you with tips on avoiding cyber threats. This week, we continue our mission with the subject of Vishing Scams.

How-To-Avoid-Vishing-Scams

Vishing Scams

What Are Vishing Scams

Vishing (voice-phishing) scams or phone fraud scams are a very common form of fraud and identity theft. Vishing is low-tech, but it is one of the most successful types of scams because it targets the weakest link in the IT and cyber security chain – the human element. The scam doesn’t depend on sophisticated malware, but rather advanced social engineering tactics. Criminals and fraudsters use vishing scams to target individuals or businesses in order to obtain personally identifiable information, fraudulent payments, or other information that can be sold or used to commit other crimes.

Vishing Scams On Individuals

When targeting individuals through a vishing scam, scammers impersonate a representative of a business such as a bank, the police, or insurance company. They typically use information they obtained from a previous data breach so that they have just enough information about you to make the phone call seem legitimate. For example, the fraudster impersonates a representative from your bank. They call and tell you they just need to verify some information because they noticed irregular transactions. They then tell you a list of fake purchases and ask if it’s you. When you say “no” they ask you to confirm your account info so they can decline the transactions and just like that they have access to your bank accounts. The fraudster has used your fear of identity theft to commit identity theft against you.

The best way to protect yourself from Vishing Scams is to ask the caller to provide company info, their name and title, case number, and telephone number. After you have the caller’s information, hang up and confirm the information provided. Call back only if everything checks out.

Vishing Scams On Businesses

When scammers target a business using a vishing scam, they typically assume the identity of an account holder with the purpose of gaining access to the individual’s account. The account holder information has usually been obtained through identity theft or a previous data breach. Using their social engineering skills, the scammer calls the business and provides a believable backstory and gains access to the account. For example, they might tell the customer service representative that either they were recently in a car accident, their apartment or home was broken into or that they experienced a birth or death in the family and that they can’t remember their password or login info. Whatever the story, it will be emotionally charged and designed to create sympathy so that the representative doesn’t follow company policy. Next thing you know, the business representative has given temporary login information to a fraudster and criminal. In this case, the fraudster has used a sympathy play to get an employee to ignore company policy and procedures putting the account holder and the business at risk.

For businesses, no matter what size, the human element of IT and cyber security is one of the most critical. Most scams, from BEC Scams to Phishing Scams, are successful due to human error. Making sure your employees have the proper training and are fully aware of company policy and procedures are just as important as keeping your IT systems up to date and secure.

Protect your business with proven IT solutions. We provide system analysis, employee training, and Managed IT Services. Contact us to schedule a No-Cost Network Audit today!       

CEO Fraud Scams And Why They Are Successful

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CEO Fraud Scams And Why They Are Successful

Everyone want to keep the boss happy. Staying in their good-graces means promotions, job security and, usually, a stress-free work environment. When an email comes through from the boss marked “Urgent” our hearts race and we play through different scenarios before we even read it. Turns out they’re extremely busy and need our help getting something done. Perfect, a chance to prove how valuable we are! In today’s world of sophisticated cyber fraud this scenario is ending poorly for more and more businesses.

CEO-Fraud-Scams-And-Why-They-Are-Successful

CEO Fraud Scams And Why They Are Successful

Why CEO Fraud Scams Are So Successful

CEO Fraud Scams, also known as CFO Fraud Scams or Business Email Compromise Scams (or BEC), are a type of cyber phishing scam performed by sophisticated cyber criminals that are skilled in social engineering tactics. Just two months ago, November of 2018, it was reported that the European cinema chain Pathé had fallen victim to a BEC scam that cost them over 19 million euros! That’s roughly $21.5 million U.S.! In the case of Pathé, cyber criminals impersonated company headquarter officials and convinced the CEO and CFO of their Dutch branch to transfer the funds over a series of money transfers. You may be asking yourself, how could business or upper management fall for such a scam? Well, the cyber criminals had done their research and had even created emails that almost exactly resembled the official Pathé domain. And, they did they used social engineering and convinced the Dutch branch CEO and CFO that the funds were for a confidential acquisition and that they couldn’t discuss the transfer with anybody in the company.

This is an extreme example of a CEO Fraud or BEC scam, but it shows the extent to which fraudsters and cyber criminals will go and the tactics they use to get at your business. Cyber criminals research, plan, impersonate upper-level management.

Don’t Become A Victim of CEO Fraud Scams

With over $12 billion dollars (FBI global estimate), odds are you and your business will be the target of a BEC scam. Protecting your business is a must! Developing IT security strategies for business is our specialty. Contact Us discuss implementing a plan to protect your business from advanced cyber security threats.

How To Avoid Fake Warrant Scams

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There’s A Warrant For Your Arrest!

The other day I received a call from an unknown number and let it go to voicemail. With all the political and scam phone calls lately it’s become my standard practice. It’s easier to listen to the voicemail. This time, however, the voicemail was quite disturbing and left me calling my local sheriff’s office. The caller claimed to be with my local sheriff’s department and that there was a warrant for my arrest! Luckily, after calling my local sheriff’s office, it turned out to be a malicious scam.

How-To-Avoid-Fake-Warrant-Scams

How To Avoid Fake Warrant Scams

How The Warrant Scam Works

Sadly, these types of threatening phone call scams are becoming everyday occurrences. What’s even worse about Warrant Scams is that scammers and criminals typically target specific groups of individuals: the elderly, recent immigrants, people whose second language is English, and persons with past convictions.

The caller identifies themself as someone with your local sheriff’s office or police department. They may have a false badge number or other fake info to make it sound official. They then tell you that they are calling you because there is a warrant for your arrest due to a minor charge such as missing a Jury Duty summons. Now that they have you legitimately worried, they will tell you they are authorized to handle the matter in two ways, “Criminally” and “Civilly.” “Criminally” means they will come and arrest you at your home or workplace, which no one wants. “Civilly” means they will forego criminal charges if you pay a fine. Now that they’ve fooled you, they ask you to purchase a prepaid debit card and provide you with a number to call back in order to process your payment.

How To Avoid Fake Warrant Scams

The best way to avoid warrant scams and to not be a victim of scammers is to know that Sheriff’s Offices, Police Departments and Law Enforcement Agencies will not ask or demand payments to avoid arrest! If you receive a phone call from someone claiming to be with law enforcement demanding payment get as much information from the caller then call your local police department or sheriff’s office it report it or simply hang up!

Remember, scammers are criminals. Even if they know you are on to them, they will use intimidation tactics to get you to comply or give them your personal information. When receiving any unsolicited phone call, if you are suspicious of the caller in anyway, hang up and call the business, banking institution or law enforcement agency directly. It’s better to be safe than sorry!