Over the past few weeks I have been involved in some Senior Expo style events. It has been fun and I am meeting lots of people of all ages. To be honest I was shocked to see how many people turned out at Husson and what a vast collection of things to learn about!
Don’t Let Fraud Get You Down
Learn about it -Knowledge is POWER! Tomorrow, Senator Susan Collins, our Senator and the Chair of the Special Committee on Aging, will be speaking at the Scam Jam that AARP is putting on at Spectacular Events Center in Bangor. It’s FREE and click here to watch more about it . You don’t have to be an AARP Member to Register and it is still FREE, here is a printed description.
You might be asking, “What does this Scam Jam have to do with Technology, Kelly?”
There will be many discussions about Cybersecurity. There is a workshop by the State Police: “Staying Safe Online: Maine State Police Cyber Security Unit.”
Come down and join us! It will be fun, coffee, food, free.
In my previous post, I talked about hackers and hacking. These are the people you should get mad at when your bank, your email provider or anyone that holds passwords or user names that endlessly seem to have to change. I understand the feeling of wanting to smash your keyboard when you pick one you will remember and the providers won’t accept it because it needs a number, a capital letter, a symbol or all three and until you useall three you can’t set up your account or use your existing account. It is frustrating. But it is not their fault. They are trying to protect you and them from being hacked. It costs companies BILLIONS annually.
According to Inc. Magazine, Healthcare records are the sweet spot for criminals. And, if you get some weird call from someone that claims they are verifying some info and you don’t know who it is, you don’t recognize the number – HANG UP! These criminals may not have any information at all that can be used, but they have snippets and the information you give them or verify as they tell you, is a scam. Do not give out personal information to anyone about yourself, your kids, neighbors, your grandchildren. These criminals are looking for home addresses, telephone numbers, etc. This information seems harmless, but it valuable to the thief. As the Inc. article puts it, “…the real money is in leveraging the information to social engineer the person whose information was stolen.”
Military and Other Government Employees Hacked
What a disgusting thought that people serving our country, HACKED. In June of this year, that is exactly what happened. The Government Personnel Office was hacked and 20.1 million people affected. I got a call to verify some information about someone and I smelled a rat. Come to find out, I was right. I am so grateful I gave no information to someone who sounded legit, but was not. With 20.1 million people’s information flooding the black market, it is possible you will get a call yourself. Please don’t fall for it, hang up.
Please don’t fall for it, hang up. Next time you are talking with your own friends, tell them about this very real situation that is only growing every year. Don’t let them be a victim either.
Rather than to repeat two gems of data, I am going to provide you with links for each of them.
It is just more a sign of the times, right? More desperate people, more crime, more opportunists. Father Tom wrote in his blog about someone stealing a cell phone, then the thief calling cell phone owner’s Granny and getting money transferred into a bank account in Canada, that was the “dirtbag’s” and not the cell phone owner’s.
I asked my friend Paul Hilchey Chandler about it, (he is my all favorite & time cell guru), he wrote some suggestions to help prevent this, so he wrote about it.
Both are great reads and worth your time. Especially, if you have kids that leave their phones unattended! Of course the kids “know it all” but they lose their phones anyway!
This is a scam that originated in August of 2005, settled down for a while and now seems to be ignited again.
You are to do your civic responsibility and report for Jury Duty. Most people don’t like having rearrange their whole lives around sitting in a room awaiting for their to be name called. And more and more people are deciding to skip out on this responsibility. But arrest warrants can be issued for people that fail to appear for jury duty, so deciding not to or thinking you didn’t report when called on, can create an intimidating situation.
Of course then enter the “opportunists.” The phone rings at your house and the caller claims to be a jury coordinator.
If you tell them you never received a summons for jury duty, the caller asks you for your Social Security number and date of birth so it can be verified.
Once they “verify your PERSONAL information” they tell you they can cancel the arrest warrant. What you don’t know is they aren’t verifying anything, they aren’t canceling any warrant, they ARE stealing your identity, but in reality, you just gave it to them.
This all may sound silly to you, but do check in with your parents or other seniors in your life. They are particularly at risk for these schemes and the callers tend to be bullies.
The FBI and the federal court system have issued nationwide alerts on their web sites, warning consumers about the fraud.
Here is a link to the page on the FBI site, so you can read it for yourself. And like a previous post on this blog, snopes has it too.