The following are some of the scams reported to Better Business Bureau Northwest during June. In most instances names and locations have been omitted to protect the victims’ privacy.
An Anchorage resident reported they lost $3,440 after they were contacted by text message to attend a Google Hangouts job interview. The human resources woman said she was with “Ge Healthcare.” After the interview the Anchorage resident received a check for $2,550.77 and was told to deposit it in order to purchase the equipment they needed to begin working. The victim deposited the money and sent it to the woman with Ge Healthcare via Western Union. The victim continued to deposit checks for the woman until they were contacted by their bank and told the checks were counterfeit.
Publishing Clearing House
An Anchorage resident reported they were contacted by someone from “Publishing Clearing House” claiming they had won $1.5 million and a new car. The victim was told to bring their credit card and identification to a local grocery store to collect their prize. The Anchorage resident said the caller ID was from a number in Jamaica causing them to be suspicious. They did not meet the alleged scammer and reported the scam to BBB and ATT.
A Brothers woman reported she lost $730 to a puppy scam. She reports she sent $730 to minifluffypoms.com for a mini Pomeranian. However, after she sent the money she was contacted by someone stating the papers weren’t right and she needed to send $1,500 for insurance and a shipping crate. The woman became suspicious with the caller and asked him where he was located. The man refused to give his location so the woman ceased speaking with him.
Government Grant Scam
A Springfield resident reported they were notified that they were the recipient of a free $8,700 government grant. In order for them to claim the grant they were told to release their checking account information for direct deposit or it could be sent via Western Union. Fortunately, the victim did not release any personal information.
Home Improvement Scam
A Winifred resident reported they were contacted by someone claiming to be from Energy Resources Consulting stating they had a contract to do work on the resident’s home. The victim states they never contacted the company. They also report their neighbors have received similar phone calls.
A Sandpoint woman reported she lost $15,000 in a driveway paving scam. The woman states she received a postcard from Peters Paving. She called and set up an appointment, but the workers showed up during a different time when she was not home. The workers spoke with her husband who has Alzheimer’s/dementia. The woman states the job was supposed to be $4,500, but ended up costing $15,000. Her husband paid the workers despite not getting an estimate in writing. According to BBB investigations the company does not have a current contractor’s license in Washington or Idaho for paving.
Worldwide escapes LLC
A Boise woman reported she attended a timeshare presentation in Nampa, Idaho where Woldwide Escapes LLC offered to take over her timeshare with WorldMark if she paid the deed at $16,000. The woman reports she was told to take out a $10,000 credit card loan through Capitol One and put the other $6,000 on her own credit card. She is having trouble canceling the contract.
IRS iTunes Scam
An Addy woman reports she lost $7,000 to an IRS scam after she received a call from a man stating she was being audited. She was told if she didn’t pay them a warrant would be issued for her arrest. The victim purchased iTunes gift cards and used them to pay the listed amount. The woman reported the incident to her local sheriff’s department and BBB.
Tech Support Scam
A Walla Walla man reports they lost $800 to a tech support scam. They report they were contacted by John Connors via an internet popup, saying he had a computer virus. The man allowed the company access to the computer. Then he was told he was owed $200. The company deposited $1,000 into his bank account and he was to send $800 back to the company, which he did. The man ended up losing $800 of his money and has since reported the incident to his bank.