Tech Support Scams Survive and Waka Walmart Survey Scam
In the news, yours truly Max Volt, has fielded a couple of scam calls over the last two weeks. One was actually scam that I’d just reported on… The tech support scam where a helpful busybody calls you out of nowhere to let you know that the anti-virus security software on your computer is somehow — not up to date. If you follow their instructions, you’ll eventually wake up to some real security issues with a computer stripped of any real protection while vital identifying information like your bank account number and credit card numbers is snatched. So, beware out there! While I have reported recently that many of these scheming, scamming telemarketers have been arrested – others remain active.
Two days ago, an entirely new scam materialized. An unknown and inscrutable woman with a professional, well modulated voice called, attempting to help me claim a $100.00 Walmart gift card, and — an IPad. I was intrigued, particularly by the prospect of a free IPad. Her company was the Waka Network, and she claimed I had filled out a survey to online. OK, I admit that in a moment of distraction and idle curiosity I had indeed started to fill out a popup form that offered these prizes, but — I had stopped before putting any vital information in. At any rate, she called to assist me in the process of claiming my prize. I was extremely leery and the woman was calm and persistent, instructing me to get online, find the Waka site and then – type in my credit card information! Needless to say, after hearing of all these recent scams, I didn’t do as she instructed but instead –politely hung up with a curt yet emphatic “no thanks”. Then, I looked up the Waka Network. Apparently, this is an active scam and readers of the Telemarketing Blog, be forewarned! Here, from a site that keeps track of “rumors, hoaxes and scams” — “Waffles at Noon” is more…
“Did you get a phone call claiming that you won a free Walmart gift card?”
Beware of Ad Scams
Not even the simple and straightforward selling of a car is safe from the predations of wily telemarketing companies looking to scam unsuspecting people. In Roanoke Virginia, the company Adventis has found a novel way to both scam unsuspecting consumers and get around the Do Not Call list. Teaming up with Longwood Services, a nonprofit that claims to hire disabled people, Adventis makes robocalls to people who are selling their cars by through classified ads, offering to help them for a fee of $250.00. The robocalls earnestly promise that buyers are right there in the neighborhood of the seller, and that Adventis can easily locate them. Since they partner with Longwood Services, Adventis can safely ignore the DNC list, since nonprofits are given exemption. No cars are ever sold however, and there is no evidence that any effort was even made to sell them. The entire venture has been caught misleading people in at least five states.
Disgruntled employees, sick of the scam, came forward, helping to break news of the scheme to Roanoke news sources. One woman, tearing at her hair in tears, frantic with shame and frustration caterwauled to anyone who would listen in a thick New England accent, saying she was fed up with lying to customers and denying deserved refunds.
“I’ve been telling everyone I can,” she cried in a frantic New England drawl. “Nobody wants to hear it!”
Low Cost Computers are too good to be true!
Finally, a now bankrupt Maryland telemarketing company, Bluehippo, has been ordered to pay restitution to the people they filched by selling them low cost computer equipment that they actually never intended to send. Bluehippo is to pay $175,000 for being in violation of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act. Don’t mess with Texas!