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Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Well there has also been the rise of panhandlers who clearly aren't homeless or poor. Not saying they are getting rich doing it, but I've personally seen them in my hometown where they text away on their cellphones while they half-heartedly hold up their cardboard signs. Some of them are pretty well dressed too. There's one guy who has a really nice looking electric scooter that he sits on while begging at the corner of the Walmart parking lot and I always wonder where he plugs it in at night.

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Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



The problem isn't that they shouldn't have phones, but if you are living hand to mouth everyday are you going to get an iPhone and an expensive carrier plan or do you get the cheapo gophone from Walmart? Cause I'll tell you which I've seen them using.

I'm not saying the poor shouldn't have nice things, I'm saying that having nice things seems like less of a priority when you have to rely on the pocket change of strangers to eat.

Edit: should the government provide or take away people's laptops? Neither. But instead of buying a laptop use the public library's and use that money on something else.

Blackchamber fucked around with this message at 06:08 on Apr 8, 2016

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Reconsidering the laptop thing. Perhaps the homeless could make money doing gold farming in MMOs and thusly taking jobs back from China.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



not to mention the scarcity of payphones nowadays. Besides its easy to buy and use burner phones, and they have apps that do much the same.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



BiggerBoat posted:

What's the thing where you're browsing online and your screen locks up and tells you you're under arrest or some poo poo and that the FBI has taken over your computer?

Ransomware. Some just lock up your browser, others can make using your computer near impossible, and the worst kind can encrypt your hard-drive and if you don't pony up it'll delete it. Even if you did pay them off theres no guarantee they'll unlock your poo poo.

My friend is a pretty basic computer user but likes to torrent and she got one of these things on her laptop. She was freaking out because the cam turned on and it was 'recording' her as evidence. If she wanted to settle her case now and avoid prosecution she was, as is common, instructed to buy a prepaid card from 7-11 and enter the info. I laughed pretty hard about her being scared of it (the FBI needs iTunes cards badly apparently!), restarted her laptop in safe mode (it wouldnt let you close down the window to access anything else) and just ran some malware and antivirus stuff and it cleaned it right off.

Whenever I visit her I like to do virus/malware scans on her laptop because I like seeing how many are festering in there. Its fun for me.

Blackchamber fucked around with this message at 18:09 on Jul 19, 2016

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



many johnnys posted:

I hear they generally will unlock it, since that's how they get paid. If they torched it after getting their money, big-ticket targets like hospitals and cities would stop giving in to their demands.

Kind of a different side of it. The people who do that to hospitals and such are actively targeting them specifically and yes it'd kill the golden goose to torch them. But the kind most people end up with that browser hijacks and so on are kind of a wide net shotgun approach are more fire and forget and they don't care after they get paid because they have another fish on the hook.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



I've sat through a MLM meeting before (and longer than 3 minutes). I can't remember what they said it was going to be, a job fair or something, but when I get to the rented conference room and I look around I knew it was going to be bullshit. I'm about to turn heel and just walk out but then I hear that after the meeting theres going to be free pizza and I figured sitting though some dumb marketing video and some dumb sales pitch might be worth it for free pizza considering I was already half way across town for this shitfest.

You tell people to visit some website and buy things using your code and you get a piece of every sale and then you could hire people to be sellers under you that you get a % of their sales and from anyone they recruit and so on and a piece of a recruitment fee. I'm just sitting there with my arms folded. Testimonials from the upper level guys about how much money they are making and the cars they are driving and so on. Whatever.

At the end they go into the pressure to join and the person who invited you to this meeting tries to get you to sign on under them, which I just ignore. Around me there is a lot of excited people who are actually signing up (in my mind half or more are plants trying to build momentum or hype). After another 10 minutes of this I am really determined that I'm going to get that free pizza out of principal for sitting though all this wasting my time, at which point they announce that everyone who signed up was invited to go with the head guy and get pizza and everyone else was free to leave.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



stringball posted:

I assume that "going with the the guy" meant you signed up and bought a starter package

Exactly. Most of these MLMs require some sort of initial buy-in which is how the people on the levels above you get paid. And whenever you recruit someone else you get a cut from their buy-in.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



The christian thing is two-fold. Not just finding an honest trusting renter, but at the same time it tries to establish that the renter himself is an honest person so it can't possibly be a scam.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Big Dan Teague was famous for posing as a Bible salesman and robbing people.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



1000 Brown M and Ms posted:

I also went across the border to Shenzhen and while I was there bought a MicroSD card from a dude on the street, but it didn't work. Looked real legit though. Only cost about $10 so I wasn't too miffed.

I bought a flashdrive at ladies market (popular street market in Hong Kong for people unfamiliar) because I liked the design of the shell and it was supposed to be 4gb, and when you plugged it in it showed that much space was available but when you actually loaded files on it it was less than 1gb. I just took it apart and stuffed the innards of a different flashdrive into it though, and its the shell that I liked anyways.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Pilsner posted:

Hong Kong'ers set up tailor shops in the USA? Funny, in Asia it's Indians/Pakistanis and similar that perform tailor work.

There's a Hong Kong tailor I used when I was in HK and she regularly visits the United States. She travels to a couple cities, stays in pretty nice hotels and she does all the measurement taking and so on there then goes back to HK and makes your made-to-measure suit. I was in her office and I don't think most people would be impressed by her clients (she has photos with a lot of them on her wall) but it's like a who's who of Kung Fu movies so I was pretty blown away.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Grandma nearly got took by phone scammers posing as publishers clearinghouse last week. Standard fare, called her up saying she won but they couldn't give her the money unless she paid the taxes/fees first and that she could go to Walmart to send them the $500 and they would even stay on the phone with her the whole time and guide her every step of the way. Walmart closed in her town so she had to drive half an hour away.

When she gets there she believes she accidentally locked her keys in the car and she needs to call the police to have them come open the door. The scammers of course are urging her not to and to just go do the money order, but she keeps insisting she needs to call the police for help. They hang up on her, she calls the cops who in turn call a tow-truck or whatever to come out and open her door. Turns out she didn't lock the keys in the car at all, they were in her purse the whole time.

Of course the whole family is upset with her for nearly handing scammers a bunch of money.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



My parent's number was also on the list so I filed for them. They get all kinds of robo calls all day, everyday, so they'll probably get the max.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Lutha Mahtin posted:

It's a promotion that car dealerships put on, instead of just saying "save 10%" or "save $3000" it's just "save money with employee pricing". (Might just be a USA thing?) The idea is that employees of the car dealership get a discount on buying cars there, and for this week only so can you!!!

I don't know anything about it but the entire American car retail system is ridiculous. This American Life did an episode about all the wacky incentives that dealerships try and exploit, I learned a few things listening to it.

One I got schooled up on when I was car buying is the difference between a factory/manufacturers incentive vs a dealer incentive. To put it simply don't factor in the manufacturer's incentive and focus on what the dealer is willing to take off the price of the car first. Instead of 2 grand I got 3 grand off the price of my car which was interestingly enough a grand below what True Price said was a fair price people were paying for the car.

EDIT: Im sure they still got plenty off me regardless.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



I share this anecdote whenever car buying comes up. When I was shopping around for my first car I went down to a local dealership to take a look around. I notice there aren't any prices on it (usually you see them stickered atleast on the windshield) so I ask the guy patrolling the lot and he says 'I dont know yet, we havent looked at your credit'. I laughed and left immediately.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Michael Corleone posted:

I was at the grocery store yesterday putting my groceries in my car when a guy came up to me. He asked me what size my shoes were, I told him and he asked me if I wanted to sell them for like $20 because he knew somebody that could use them. I said no obviously. They were dress shoes not Jordan's or anything like that. Is this a scam or just a crazy guy? Even if I wanted to sell them, how does he expect me to get home with no shoes?

If he then stole something and ran off how would you chase him without shoes?

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Since nobody has mentioned it yet, I'd like to point out he might be huffing it.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Proteus Jones posted:

Jesus Christ, not everything is a scam.

Explain that to the people on the NextDoor website. Almost every other post is 'a stranger tried to interact with me in some way. I called the cops immediately and luckily because they were a minority I had predialed 911 and that saved me time!'

I took a break from the site because every now and then I would try to reason with people (he was probably a door to door salesman, kids always ride their bikes on the sidewalk safer than the street sometimes, etc) and the response is universal: if you aren't part of the lynch mob you are clearly the culprit even though its pretty unlikely that all the people who knock on their doors are all also users of the website much less me being all 20 of those people.

Theres a twitter called 'the best of nextdoor' or something like that and its all this sort of crap.

Everythings a scam.

EDIT: nextdoor is a scam to sell ring doorbell cameras is my theory. Everytime theres one of these posts about people at the door theres an ad for Ring.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



I got hit this week. Someone got my debit card info and started making charges. I caught it pretty early and called my bank but there was already a bunch of other charges pending. They put the money back into my account (about $700) but its going to be 10 days or so until I get my new card.

Pretty interesting stuff they were able to tell me just from looking at the charges. Two were done at a walmart for less than 20 a piece, but all the rest were done using 1) a Square reader 2) my information was entered manually so they didn't have a cloned or stolen card or anything like that 3) all the charges were to the same three locations; health spas (reputable ones in a rich area, not the rub and tug type).

My immediate thought was that whoever was working at these locations was buddies with whoever was using my card info. Maybe they went in and said they lost their card or that someone was treating them and gave them the card info but the nature of the charges: 75 dollars x3 then 150 all at one place and the rest of the charges on my card at other spas and a hair salon. How does that not seem fishy to the cashier if they weren't in on it? One of those times they ran the card at almost 2am (not what time it was processed, charged at 2am.)

Nothing on my other accounts and I went ahead and put a lock on my credit stuff through as a free service given to me last year when I was told my info might have been stolen in a data breach. Hmm...

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Lutha Mahtin posted:

I'm not sure where you're getting your information...

Blackchamber posted:

I caught it pretty early and called my bank

Blackchamber posted:

Pretty interesting stuff they were able to tell me just from looking at the charges.

I guess I didn't make that clear enough? When I called the bank and they were asking me questions about which charges weren't mine and which were they told me the information they could see. I figured the stuff about knowing they manually inputted my info and what times things were charged (not posted though since I couldn't see everything that was still pending but they could) should have sounded more bank-person-inside-info-ish since I wouldn't be able to tell that just by what I was seeing on my bank statement.

Blackchamber fucked around with this message at 01:00 on Jun 9, 2018

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



mostlygray posted:

There's not a lot of logic behind credit card scammers. Odds are, the spa had nothing to do with anything.

I still can't figure how one of the spas that is only open until 9pm would charge my card at 2am. Again this info is coming from my bank, that was when the charge was made not when the transaction posted.

When I worked retail I knew the best way people passed funny money and fake checks (I remember a travelers check I found during closeout that was one sided, home printer made, blurry with the colors running together and no holographics) is to have a friend behind the register being the one accepting it. No risk... well until your employer catches on that all the bad stuff happens when you are the one working the register. I just think if you are going to have someone hand jam card info 4 times in a row and once more after hours that person can't be completely ignorant or the least bit suspicious.

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Blackchamber posted:

One of those times they ran the card at almost 2am (not what time it was processed, charged at 2am.)

Blackchamber posted:

they manually inputted my info and what times things were charged (not posted though since I couldn't see everything that was still pending but they could)

Blackchamber posted:

Again this info is coming from my bank, that was when the charge was made not when the transaction posted.

Captain Monkey posted:

Maybe the spa has an old system that does all cc transactions at once, scheduled at 2am. That used to be a thing that most companies did and some smaller companies still do it.

I really don't know how to make it clearer, but allow me to reach back into the past when I worked retail... When your card is used, a temporary hold is put on that amount in your account. This is part of a two step process, authorization and a settlement. The authorization allows the merchant ensure that you have a valid method of payment (people want to be sure they are gonna get paid). The settlement, usually with a delay, which in this case you are suggesting is a batch settlement done at 2am comes after.

So what I've been saying is the authorization which comes first, as was told to me by my bank, happened at 1 something A.M. (I rounded to 2am). So regardless of what you are suggesting as the settlement (or posting or processed) time the initial authorization time doesn't make sense since it is outside their business hours.

Way back in the olden times when I worked retail, and things may have changed because back when I worked it peoples credit card info was still printed in full on the receipts, in the event that the point of sale system was down and you needed to do the carbon copy pressing (all my new bank cards down even have raised numbers anymore) you still, painfully/ had to call into a hotline which did the authorization for you. Then when the system came back up you had to go back and enter the info into the computer and then save both your copy and the pos receipt together for record keeping or if there was a dispute later you could prove the card was there physically.

I don't think thats the case today, because it seems people are willing to hand jam in peoples info (other posters have offered examples of this like contractors) and there no longer is a requirement to be able to prove the card was there in person (if un-unusable like if the mag strip was bad). Which makes me curious how disputes are handled, but I digress.

And its not even important in my case because the time period between authorization and settlement in my case was only a couple hours. There were 3 charges at that same spa earlier in the day that were authorized then a couple hours later settled/processed/posted what have you and not done as a batch at night. So your theory doesn't work unless at some point that day they switched their POS system to a different system.

Lutha Mahtin posted:

yeah OP, without knowing how all the links in the chain work from the spa, to visa/mc/etc, and to your bank, it's hard to know things for sure. you could call the spa if you're really curious. depending on how good/smart they are about this they may even appreciate it. they might be defensive and weird about it too though, so don't be surprised if that's the response you get

They weren't helpful. Neither was Square which was their POS system. In both cases they can't provide information to me the card owner, because disputes have to be handled through my bank. Can't tell me what was bought or sold, none of that. They were both very defensive, you were right about that.

Tunicate posted:

bought a gift card online maybe?

This is actually totally possible! The amounts charged on my card don't directly correspond to any of the services on their menu but it they are an amount they sell gift cards online for. Would totally explain how they were able to charge my card around 2am also, and wouldn't appear fishy to anyone since there isnt an actual person doing a 'sale' for them to make multiple manually entered information transactions. I don't know if Square does this as a service though. Also this is really a bad idea though because in the event where its disputed, like I did, couldn't they look at the transaction and see the associated gift card number info and then the retailer could void the GC?

Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Jobbo_Fett posted:

Hi hello I would like to ask/know what the thread opinion is on STAR CITIZEN

Thanks and namaste

I like to go into SC twitch streams and act like I'm interested in the game then ask if its worth getting into it now or if I 'should wait until the Game of the Year edition is released since those usually come with all the extra dlc or extras'. Even supporters of the game/streamers will agree the game has to actually come out some day before there can be an GotY edition can come out, and its not likely to happen.

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Blackchamber
Jan 25, 2005



Guest2553 posted:

America is a scam

Why do you hate our freedom?

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