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Earlier this year I wrote an article for Oakville.com earlier this year on an on-line scam (Another Scam). I remembered it a few minutes ago when I got the same phishing e-mail from an aunt in California, who unfortunately got mugged on an unannounced surprise trip to Manila.
Of course, my aunt is not in Manila… not that I can reach her right now, but seeing as the text is nearly identical to the one I cited in July. Obviously her e-mail account was hijacked, and the scammers are praying on the goodness of all of her contacts. As I state in the article I have heard horror stories of intelligent people being scammed out of thousands of dollars by this scam.
I wrote my aunt an e-mail immediately – after leaving urgent voice mails at her home, office, and mobile – telling her what she had to do:
- Change your e-mail password immediately! (along with all of your other passwords – they will likely have been compromised too).
- Send an e-mail to ALL of your contacts and let them know that you are safe, and to NOT send you money.
- Go to the following site: http://www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/fraud/internet_fraud/internet_fraud. At the bottom there is a section ‘How to Report Crime & Fraud.’ You must report this!!
I do not know if she will get it in time – My aunt is not a very technologically connected woman. On the other hand she is a wonderful woman with a big heart, and I am sure a lot of her friends will be concerned and willing to help. It is because of this that it is so important that I get this message out… tell your friends and family about it, because they could be next.
- On a related note, I am glad that I went to the trouble of changing ALL of my on-line passwords yesterday!
- Another Scam and Another Article on Oakville.com: http://garvis.ca/2012/07/15/another-scam-and-another-article-on-oakville-com/
I have been a bad boy. I am usually a monthly columnist for www.Oakville.com, but of late I have been a little delinquent… deadlines being what they are, and I have to find the inspiration. I have, as a result, missed a couple of months.
A few weeks ago I got an e-mail from a fellow resident of Oakville (or at least he used to own a business here… he certainly lives within 50 miles of here. He is not someone I know well, but I certainly know him and when I got an e-mail telling me (and everyone) that he was traveling abroad and ran into trouble, I was suspicious… and rightly so.
The article is called Another Scam: Is your friend abroad really in need? it came about in hopes of preventing my readers from falling victim to this scam. I wish I could remember who it was, but I met someone a month before who actually had been victimized. Hopefully this article will prevent others from suffering the same embarrassing fate.
Read the whole article here, and leave your comments!
This morning my most recent article for www.oakville.com was published – a couple of weeks late (my fault). Because it is meant to be more consumer focused than enterprise it will certainly appeal to a certain segment of my readers! It is called ‘How can I protect myself from data loss?’ and it is about backup solutions for the SOHO (Small Office / Home Office) and consumer. Let me know what you think – join the conversation!
Also I am always looking for new ideas for the column, and would love to hear your thoughts! Remember, it should be problem-focused and not product-focused… I am, for this column, trying to remain product agnostic.