Scams A-Plenty – Don’t Fall for Them – Update on FBI MoneyPak Scam
We're hearing about a lot of scams happening and there seem to be more than normal where the scammers are pretending to be some governmental agency. In the last week we've heard of scams where they claim to be the DEA, the FBI, Homeland Security, and Customs. These usually involve prescriptions bought online and they threaten to issue warrants unless you send them money. Some even warn you not to call the phone number that you received the call from because it is out of the country and can cost you thousands to call it. In addition to the prescription drugs, others claim that you have violated trademark or customs laws.
There are always the ones claiming that you owe a Payday loan that you got over the internet and which you either 1) don't remember getting or 2) already paid off. These usually involve a threat that you'll be arrested that afternoon if you don't pay them via some type of instant money.
Of course, there are also the usual lottery and timeshare sale scams.
A few rules to remember:
1) If they want you to pay them up front because you won something, it's a scam;
2) If they want you to pay money up front so they'll sell your timeshare for you, it's a scam, even if they guarantee they have a buyer;
3) If they want you to send money via MoneyPak, Western Union, Green Dot credit card, or anything similar, it's a scam. A government agency will never ask you to do this.;
4) If they want you to deposit a check or money order and then immediately wire them money, it's a scam;
5) If you are going to be a "mystery shopper", it's most likely a scam (see above rules); and
6) If it sounds too good to be true, it is.
Use your head. You don't get something for nothing, and you aren't going to get rich if they are wanting you to send them money, whether it is for taxes, shipping, lawyer fees, etc.
The most important rules, if you send them money then don't be mad at anybody except yourself.
UPDATE: It appears to be some type of virus on computers that is causing a popup claiming that it is from the FBI, DEA or Homeland Security and they have caught you in some kind of illegal activity. It then advises you to send a MoneyPak to prevent prosecution. If you see this then there are some companies which sell a virus remover that will take this off your computer. You can look in the ads in the sidebar of this website and they may advertise there.
One version of the scam makes it appear that your computer has been locked by the FBI who will only unlock it after you send them $200-300 by MoneyPak. I've heard of this one the most when they accuse you of illegally downloading movies.
Again, don't be fooled it is not the FBI or any other government agency, it is a scam!