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Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Some friends of my parents that I previously thought were reasonably intelligent people almost fell for a scam at the weekend. They received a call claiming to be from HMRC (the British tax authority) saying that they had underpaid taxes on their business for the last three years. To address this they needed to go to Argos and purchase £1000 of iTunes gift cards, and read the numbers over the phone. If they didn't comply within three hours the police would be contacted and come and put them in prison that day.

They realised it wasn't legit when they pulled up outside Argos and found it was closed. They're really pleased with themselves for having spotted that it was a con, and don't seem to have worked out that they have proven a really easy way to 1) get them out of the house at short notice and 2) get them to drive to an empty car park on a Saturday evening with £1000 in cash. Idiots.

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Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Yes, and delivering ultimatums via phone on a Saturday evening, and contacting you on your personal rather than business number, and asking you to call them back to a mobile rather than landline, and threatening to imprison you without trial, etc, etc....

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



I had an amazing email to my work address today:

Greg posted:

Re: money

Wheres my money? Wheres my loving MONEY

Please find invoice attached.

Kind regards

Greg

Good old Greg.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



PT6A posted:

I've been getting a lot of "FedEx" emails saying that my parcel could not be delivered and would I please open this ZIP that has all the shipping details?

Who the gently caress falls for that poo poo?

One of our highly qualified and experienced technical support team, last week. He opened an attachment called details.odt.zip and totally shagged his system to the point that it was just quicker to re-image the disks. At least now I have an answer when they ask why our dev environment is totally separate and locked down.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



thrakkorzog posted:

Is he still working there? I mean I could understand if someone from HR or accounting did that. But if you're working in Tech Support it seems like don't open suspicious attachments should be tech support 101. And are you hiring?

Yeah, he's still there. Young guy, good worker, did something stupid without thinking. Recorded discussion, understanding confirmed, further incidents may result in disciplinary action, etc. We're generally pretty mellow about this kind of thing as long as there's no malice.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



This is a bit of an odd one. Washed up bad musician Tom Delonge of Blink 182 infamy has started an academy of science, aerospace, and.... entertainment (those three disciplines that always go together). He's crowd-sourcing investments and talking a big talk about how much of his own money he's putting in, but digging into the details reveals he will personally receive a large annual payment from the organisation regardless of their financial performance. There are several other red flags such as a Scientology-esque "invest more to learn more secrets" and one of the advisors coincidentally having the same name as the Executive Director of the Georgia Institute of Aerospace Innovation (meaning a cursory Google search seems to validate his credentials).

To The Stars Academy of Arts & Science

Some highlights include claims they will build a vessel that can travel "instantaneously through space, air and water":



Timecube-style maths supporting methods to travel "beneath time":



And an advisor who looks like a Vegas stage magician:



It seems primarily to be weird marketing for Delonge's range of books and comics, but that hasn't prevented a very naive colleague contributing $200 that he really can't afford to the cause.



To the stars!

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



What the gently caress is Shark Tank and why does all my spam for a fortnight tell me that whatever poo poo it’s trying to hock is available on Shark Tank? I’ve just deleted thirty-six spam emails from my work account and thirty-four of them mention Shark Tank either in the title or the text.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

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EL BROMANCE posted:

It's a TV show. Same thing as Dragon's Den if you're in a non-US country that has that instead.

Ah okay yeah, if it’s the same as Dragons Den in the UK then I can’t see how it could possibly be considered an endorsement. I’ll assume the US version doesn’t really feature herbal viagra substitutes and a special new kind of orthopaedic sandals like these emails are claiming.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

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EKDS5k posted:

Neither way is "correct," because who fuckin' says so? It's like kitty-corner, catty-corner, cat-a-corner, kit-a-corner, kattywampus, and caddy-corner. Every one of them is "right" to someone, but they're all mispronunciations of "cater-corner," and "cater" itself is a mispronunciation of a French word. Nobody even knows or cares anymore, though, and it doesn't matter anyway, because 90% of the time you're talking to someone who uses the same word as you, and the meaning is understood.

I’m a native English speaker and I don’t know what any of that means.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

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WithoutTheFezOn posted:

The term means “on the opposite diagonal corner”. Like, SW vs NE.

Oh right, thanks. We don’t have that in our hosed up unintelligible dialect speaking backwater (England).

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

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A friend is selling a beat up old Porsche for £5,000 and a guy is trying to persuade him to trade it for £13,000 of wildlife portraits. It's... weird.

Only registered members can see post attachments!

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



EL BROMANCE posted:

Just curious, does anyone get an absolute poo poo ton of spam mail revolving around flight simulators? It's a very niche thing so wondering if it's widespread or if I've somehow become the target of some dude who thinks I really want some simulatin'.

Yep, loving hundreds. All in the same format and alongside loads of “STAY HARD FOR NINE HOURS WITH JUST ONE PILL” emails written in exactly the same way, same layout and everything. Weird as hell. They seem to sail right through the filter, the only other ones that do that are the “got video of you wanking, send bitcoin” ones.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



peanut posted:

Some JWs gave a pamphlet to my 3 year old who answered the door while I was using the hair dryer. I need some Satanic poo poo to wiggle at them :/

Ask them if they are still letting abuse victims be closely questioned by their abusers before going to the police.

Ask them what happens to members of their church who want to leave.

Ask them how their church works to integrate gay or trans members.

If they have a young person with them, ask if they're having fun and tell them there are far better ways to spend a Saturday afternoon.


Nothing to do with scams, I just strongly dislike JWs and seem to get picked on a lot so I've had the opportunity to refine my responses.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



We tend to get groups door-knocking every couple of months or so, but my neighbours are JWs. When we first met five years ago they invited me to church and I told them as long as we never discuss this, we'll get along fine and we always have and still do. The rest of their group, though, seem to have taken it as a challenge and every time they pick up one of the kids to take them off for some casual child abuse they take the opportunity to knock on my door. One guy makes a point of parking over my drive, and just sits and stares at the house. Me and the baby laugh and wave out the window, but he never waves back.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



RUBBISH SCAM ALERT

I have an allotment. The fee is £25 a year paid in advance. There are fewer than ten allotment holders total, we all know each other, share tools, take tea breaks together, etc.

When a guy with a virtually unintelligible Russian accent starts walking from plot to plot telling people the rules have changed, it is now £100 a year and it needs to be paid in cash, now, or "I will have to take this garden" it tends not to go down very well. The end result was a group of angry men carrying gardening tools telling him to gently caress off or we'll call the police. He set off on foot and as he left picked up a spade and took it with him, so we called the police anyway. They picked him up half a mile down the road and brought the spade back. Weird as hell.

If I get there tonight and the allotment has been seized by the Russian government I'm going to look a right chump.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



I got the Spotify email and when I went to log in to Spotify it said you need to change your password, so it seemed fairly legit.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

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Quote-Unquote posted:

Yeah like I said it all seemed legit, just weird since I use OAuth and not a normal Spotify login

Oh yeah I see what you mean, I didn't have a Spotify-only password set up. Oh well, I do now!

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Over the last six months a friend, a family member and I have all cards cloned. Every time the scammers try and buy loads of sex toys from online vendors like lovehoney.com or pandora.com:



What's with all the sex toy buying?

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Red Oktober posted:

Oh absolutely, like the collectors who phoned me a few years ago and when I mentioned I had just moved in and had nothing to do with the previous tenants tried to convince me that as I lived there now, I owed the debt. (It was their utility bill)

This happened to us with a £2400 bill but luckily they were stupid enough to put some of their lies in writing so we ended up with a £67 bill and £600 compensation. Thanks, EDF!

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Sanford posted:

This happened to us with a £2400 bill but luckily they were stupid enough to put some of their lies in writing so we ended up with a £67 bill and £600 compensation. Thanks, EDF!

Astonishingly, a single day after I posted about it in this thread, this morning I received a cheque for £3.50 because the payment we did make was “miscalculated”. Come August it will be ten years since the payment was made. Imagine if it was an amount of money you cared about!

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



My company has started being bombarded with LinkedIn invites for (mainly) attractive, professional looking young chinese women. The entire profile is in chinese, except the company name (our company) and that they're based in Beijing (we have two offices, both in the UK). Is there something more to it than trying to get a link to our company, so you look more legit for future scams? Like we're the patsy rather than the intended victim?

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



I just got a call from "Amazon" saying that there was a problem with my Visa card ending XX. They got the card wrong, but they had my name and knew that I signed up for Prime last week. I just contacted Amazon and they went no, not possible, must be a coincidence. What gives?

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



A young woman I know called Josie got into some MLM selling healing crystals, soothing bath salts, etc earlier this year. I think it's homeopathic nonsense but she found and lost three jobs during Covid so whatever. She's made a small profit selling them on local facebook and similar - she says she's up about 20% on her initial investment, with about a quarter of her original stock purchase remaining.

Her mum was telling me yesterday they had a team call where she was first pressured and then straight up insulted for not buying any of a new range "until she sells what she's got". Then she got publicly shamed for being the only person in the local team not to bring anyone in on their regular calls for new recruits. Then finally they asked if anyone would like to talk about their success, which a handful of people did, including Josie. She was the only one to reference making a profit, which one of the leaders said she should reinvest. Josie said she'd like to but she's got bills to pay, and was reprimanded for "not having the right attitude."

Expecting to pay bills with profits from your MLM = the wrong attitude. Actually I can see where they're coming from...

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Tunicate posted:

Healing crystals are bullshit, but even without scamming sick people, if you can sell individual crystals you can buy them in bulk and make way more than 20%.

Haha you are not wrong, the most popular thing she sells is a mood necklace thing where you put a different crystal in to reflect how you're feeling. The necklace is £15 and additional crystals £5 each and it is literally the first result for "healing crystal necklace" on AliExpress: https://www.aliexpress.com/item/330...earchweb201603_

To be as fair to her as I can, I just had a sneaky look at her FB page and it's a lot of "soothing" and "calming" and "relaxing" but I didn't see a single "healing" or "medicinal" or anything like that.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Dik Hz posted:

If she can make money selling that garbage in an MLM, she must be truly gifted at sales. She could probably make a lot more money at a real sales job.

She was clearing the equivalent of a £30k salary in commission sales on the make up counter in Debenhams before all this, so she's good at sales. I'm more inclined to say her turning a profit is a combination of 1) actually selling stuff rather than "recruiting", 2) no-one else is doing it round here (yet), and 3) people are bored and if you make an order today she'll probably stick it through your door half an hour later.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



That’s really sad.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Desert Bus posted:

I have been wrestling with ignoring it cause not my monkeys, not my zoo, or messaging her and REALLY belatedly telling her that she has the wrong person and also that she got scammed. I kind of feel like she's in too deep and won't believe me at this point and will think that the scammer is just finding a new way to screw with her. If I had no morals I could ask her to send me some money for processing fees.

Yeah I was trying to think of a "you should...." post but there's really nothing. At that stage just ignoring is probably best - at least she's not being sent off into the clutches of someone else that will take advantage of her.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Not really a scam but celebrating today as the last traces disappear from my credit file of when a “friend” managed to take out ELEVEN phone contracts one after another and have them all land on my file instead of his when he failed to pay for any of them. That was a fun time. Semi-relevant because it only happened because we have similar names/birthdays and shared a house for a short while. That’s all it took.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Yep, cycled through different companies with an average of 6 weeks between contracts. Best guess he was signing up on Direct Debit, defaulting on the contract and just signing up for another as soon as the service cut off. He had a massive gap on his credit file and was of No Fixed Abode, and somehow they were checking his (very empty) credit file to let him take new contracts, but then dumping it onto mine when he defaulted on the payments. Thankfully this was AFTER we got our mortgage, and only came to light when I went to sign up for a short-term credit card for taking on holiday.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



In the UK? I got seven "HMRC ARE COMING TO ARREST YOU" calls yesterday morning.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Red Oktober posted:

We used to have this problem every so often with my grandparents when I lived at home. They'd think they had put the phone properly, but it hadn't terminated the call.

And of course there is no way to call them back to tell them. Because obviously the mobile phone we got them is turned off and in a drawer, because it's only taken out when they went in the car.

Strong memories of driving 40 miles each way in the dead of winter to tell my grandma she'd not hung the phone up properly.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



I buy and make dice for D&D and the current hotness is hollow metal dice - they've been available for a few years but just recently at a reasonable price. Over the last few months they went from Etsy-only for genuine, handmade ones, to being widely available on Ali. Now Etsy is flooded with "genuine, handmade" hollow dice that are just purchased in bulk from Ali and resold at a 30-50% markup. Just a big old scammy circle that must happen for literally thousands of products, I happened to be close/knowledgeable enough to see this one unfold in real time.

Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



Atticus_1354 posted:

There's a goon making dice in his basement as a full-time job and selling on etsy who sees his designs pop up as knockoffs. It sucks rear end how quick stuff gets counterfeit.

It does, but that final bit of "now all the fake poo poo is on Etsy too" is what really sucks. As a consumer it's impossible to tell what's a real, artisanal product and what's a knockoff from Ali. Ali uses the original pics from Etsy, and so in turn do the Ali resellers back on Etsy. Impossible to tell what you're getting until it arrives.

That said, link to the goon dice provider, please?

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Sanford
Jun 30, 2007

...and rarely post!



namlosh posted:

...not sure how they turned a profit

This is what I think about Ali. Looking at a fake lego man or whatever, someone had to copy it, manufacturer it, pack it, pick it for the order, bag it up, ship it half way round the world via half a dozen different carriers... and it's cost me 90p. How is anyone making money off something like that?

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