Scammers spend 24 hours a day and seven days a week trying to build a better mouse trap.
If there is any doubt as to the players in that scenario, we – hardworking individuals who work full-time jobs, pay their bills and taxes, try to live within our financial means and earn money without stealing it from others – are the mice.
An attempt was made to scam me. This wasn’t the first time, but I wanted to share it. Earlier this week I received an email that stated it was from “Chase” with a subject line “Your new payment notification.” The email, which started out with my name, stated, “This letter is to notify you that your instant payment of $3,002.93 to Sgt. Howard was sent. It may take of up to 10 minutes for this transaction to occur on you account.”
Please ignore the bad grammar in that statement. That is exactly how it was written.
Under that, it had a link “Get your transaction details below” and “Chase. Forward Thinking”
It was signed “Regards, Jacob Taylor, Head of Bus Banking Customer Support”
It ended with “You will not receive a response.”
First, I wasn’t about to click that link. I’m relatively sure it would have led me somewhere that I could dispute the transaction. Of course, I’ll have to give them my information just to make sure I’m who I say I am – I’m rolling my eyes to that one never happening.
I don’t have a Chase account. The first thing I did was check my credit, just to make sure a Chase account wasn’t opened in my name. Nope. No Chase account. Then, I did seek customer service, but not Mr. Jacob Taylor. I went onto the Chase website and obtained a customer service number. My thought was to notify them that I had received a scam in their name.
I assumed that business would want to know. When I finally succeeded in getting past the automated system to a human (I’m guessing by the sound of her voice that she wasn’t native to America or even sitting on American soil), she hung up on me as soon as I started telling her what happened. I was shocked. I was obviously wrong. Apparently Chase didn’t want to know or she, as their representative, did not want to hear it.
Oh, well. There you go. I was a target of phishing, which is where digital thieves lure you into divulging your password info through convincing emails and web pages. These phishing emails and web pages resemble legitimate credit authorities, such as Chase or Citibank, or PayPal. They frighten or entice you into visiting a phony web page and entering your ID and password. Commonly, the guise is an urgent need to confirm your identity.
Doubt everything. It’s the only way to live these days. As scammers build the better traps, questioning everything and educating yourself is the best way to avoid being caught in one.
Standard reporter Lisa Hobbs can be reached at 473-2191.