Thursday, August 28, 2008

Con Man's Primary Targets: Who are the Victims?

--Are You in One of These Major Target Categories?

The con man's aim at specific targets is well organized, focused, pinpoint. It comes through like a telepathic echo.

His foremost candidates for victimhood are:

> The elderly. Good net worth, failing memories (inability to compile adequate evidence to be used against the con man), failing health (great for every manor of health-aid support scam), and a generally trusting nature. These are the lucrative appeals.

All the traits of growing old are sought out: those who first forget names, then faces, then pulling up their zippers (and, even worse, those who forget to pull them down. ) The individuals who are all doped up like a bear in the zoo are the very most attractive targets. These folks have been found the easiest to separate from their money

Yes, it's these people, numbering among your parents and grandparents, who desperately need special protection.

> Women. Especially older women. They are still considered to be the helpless sex when it comes to defending themselves in most sorts of business transactions (a changing scene, but one not changing fast enough). Reasoning? Who knows? Just to grab some possible reasoning out of thin air, let's liken things to the fat lady. The fatter the fat lady, the more likely she is to not object to caricature. Maybe that's it. Or, perhaps, the hard and fast fact: Fat ladies use more soap.

> People who live alone. While dogs and cats can be delightful companions, the con man still thrives on filling this "loneliness" gap--a desire for occasional human camaraderie. After all, there has to be something more left in life than being the crotchety old man, standing on the porch in his pajamas, yelling at the kids to get off the lawn.

> Church goers and anyone known for charitable giving This, to the con man, is like establishing a tributary connection to a flowing river. Many of this type are generous to a fault. These are people who, when they try to use a credit card and a family member chases them with a scissors, they should take the hint and not use it.

> The young, the restless, and the stupid-- younger, more adventurous people renowned for their gullibility. Targets sought most are those who think life is too short to live the same day twice. Never play cards with a man named, Doc, is, sadly, a fundamental truism not yet learned by most young people.

After taking on these primary groups the con man's thrust is simple: Go after any
assets that show, be they life insurance proceeds, pensions, annuities , stocks, retirement nest eggs, home equity, or, best of all, just plain old cash.

All told, the con man's search for victims concentrates on these, considered to be, most vulnerable groups. If you always wanted to be a procrastinator, but never got around to it, the time is ripe when dealing with a con man who reveals to you who he really is--makes you realize an important double whammy of life: Money can't buy you everything, and, then again, neither can no money.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Legal Thriller-Type Con Game?--Nuttiest of Them All: Online Pharmacy Scams

--Blatantly Illegal, Viagra-inspired Internet Pharmacy Fraud is Flourishing

If, each morning, you charged from your home onto the street, arms waving in the air, shouting, "Nuke the gay whales for Jesus," do you suppose your neighbors might think you'd lost your mind?

No doubt.

But, oddly, this is precisely the risk so many people take on--attaining an equal level of lunacy, possibly--when pursuing really hazardous dealings with online pharmacies. The con man knows that their victims want to be treated as equals--that, while dogs look up to you, and cats look down at you, pigs treat you as an equal. He is, therefore, right at home wallowing in the mud, filth, and slop of this sty. The consequences can be staggeringly detrimental to your health, as well as your standing as a law-abiding citizen. Whatever it is that hits the fan is not evenly distributed.

Two reasons:

First, it's a violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetics Act to vend prescription drugs without a valid prescription. In short, a flat-out violation of the law. If your level of awareness is equivalent to one who donated all of his assets to O.J.'s Defense Fund, you might not have realized the significance of this, but the consequences can be severe, indeed. Enough to be akin to squashing your faith in O.J.'s attempts to find the "real killer." Fines and even imprisonment could loom on your horizon, penalizing you for your involvement.

Boiled down, it's hard, planning for the future when you're so busy fixing what you screwed up yesterday. Confidence is what you have when you really don't understand the situation. Don't let yourself get into that position.

And, secondly, it could be dangerous to your health. You have no idea where these drugs came from. Many are complete rip-off counterfeits--promoted by con men--which originate from all corners of the world

Analysis of pharmaceuticals bought from online pharmacies has revealed that the efficacy and potency of the delivered products vary considerably. Some contain no active ingredient at all. Worse yet, trace amounts of such deadly heavy metals as lead,, zinc, chromium, cadmium and arsenic have been found--even poppy seed (heroin) and cocaine--to build a new repeat-customer base, apparently. It's as bad as it seems, and, yes, they are out to "get you." At the very least, dealing with most of these people is about as useless as ordering synthetic hairballs for your ceramic cats.

Oh, there's more, too:

Additional crimes committed include copyright infringement, falsification of doctor approval, malware intrusion (for identity theft purposes), money laundering, false advertising, and sale of non-FDA approved drugs. If you are clean of involvement with this sort of commerce, fine. If you know people who have fallen into this trap, warn them off Friends don't let friends drive naked.

Where actual M.D.s are involved, these are usually doctors with troubled work histories, financial problems, substance abuse questions, and legal conundrums. Where questionnaires are included, these are usually a farce--never weighed, considered, or checked--merely window dressing. There is nowhere to go when dealing with con men like these. Remember, cancer kills smoking.

This in-your-face breaking of the law has been going on for some time. You can only wonder, when will our government stop inadvertently affording a protective cover for these people--con men of every stripe--and unmercifully clamp down, determinedly stamp this out?

That's like asking, why do they lock gas station bathrooms? Are they afraid somebody will clean them?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Cyber Criminals Pursuing Alarming New Fraud: Department of Justice Supposedly Investigating Average Citizens

--Emails allegedly from U.S. Department of Justice Spreading Stress and Anxiety--Big Time

Old joke. Question: What do you have when a con man is buried up to his neck in sand? Answer: Not enough sand.

For a reason?

When this scam comes at you, courtesy of the cyber criminals, watch out. It is one of the most vicious con games around. Yes, money does take the sting out of being poor. But, to earn it this way? Far submerged below contempt. Makes you think: Some people are alive only because it's illegal to shoot them.

This one has to do with the fraudulent email you could receive from a cyber criminal at any time informing you that you--or your company--are being investigated by the Department of Justice due to a complaint filed by some (unnamed) party. Could involve the IRS, SSA or any number of other government agencies. It's every bit as bad as you might think, and, yes, they are out to "get" you.

All things being equal, all things are never equal. Considering their victims to be as dumb as an ox eating grass,, the cyber criminal's thinking is simple: If your potential victims think virgin wool comes from ugly sheep, feed that perception.

Confusion? Sure. By design. If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts. The leak in the roof is never in the same location as the drip

These emails, seemingly legitimate, would contain your name and several other pieces of personal information. The cyber criminal's thrust is up front, blunt. He follows Anthony's Law of Force: Don't force it; use a large hammer. If you hit something hard enough it will fall over.

Goal of the cyber criminals is to gain access to the "vitals" of your personal information--the Mother Lode--PIN numbers and passwords. Failing that, SS numbers, bank account and debit / credit card numbers would be acceptable too. They start out by going for the jugular, and, if they fall short, settle for the gizzard.
One way or the other, if you dance with a rattlesnake you ill get bitten every time.

The complaint included with the email is always in the form of an attachment which, once opened, contains virus software which will steal your vital personal data. (To err is human, but to really screw things up requires a computer.) This virus has a little "kicker" to it. It comes gift-wrapped in a screensaver file. This way most anti-virus programs cannot detect its malicious intent. Once downloaded by you, the virus is designed to monitor username and password logins, and record the activity. A "gotcha" game.

For the victim it's always darkest just before the lights go out. For the cyber criminal it's just a game--like playing poker and laying a palm across his hole card.

It has often been said that the first thing to know about a survival situation is to not get into a survival situation. (Yes, a prefrontal lobotomy would solve a lot of problems.) If you receive such an email, touch nothing, click nothing. Instead, fire off a complaint to:

Remember, it's stuffy inside a fortune cookie. Don't believe everything you think.

This all leads up to finality by way of another old con man joke. Question: How do you keep a con man from drowning? Answer: Shoot him.

Illegal, of course, as stated earlier--therefore discouraged--but the urge would be strong.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Scam Artists' Job Opportunities: FBI Crackdown Reveals Them

--High-risk Opportunity for Big Income as Part of Worldwide Net

Don't listen to your mother; talk to strangers. Risk is the name of the game.

If this is a mindset you could embrace--and you don't mind getting entwined in a world that is a cross between Sodom and Gomorra, and Alice's Wonderland--an exciting, remunerative new career might await you.


Sure. The U.S. FBI has just recently exposed the inner workings of a gigantic, international "phishing" scam that shows the way. If you desperately cling to Utopian conclusions, this may be the "fit" you've been waiting for.

If you wanted to move to Romania, you might even be able to start near top management. This is where this colossal scam is headquartered, with tentacles reaching into the U..S., Canada, Portugal, and Pakistan. Virginity can be cured. So can honesty.

If your radar picked up on it, with a move to Romania you could become a "Supplier"--engage in online phishing on a massive scale. You'd gather personal data--PINs, social security numbers, credit information,, etc.--from all parts of the world. You'd get to learn all about "smishing" too--much the same as "phishing," but on text messaging. Shows what you can come up with, just by staying awake.

You could become uniquely maladjusted, and have fun doing it. In today's new, internet communications world you've got to wonder: How fast would lightening travel if it didn't zig zag? As Winston Churchill said: A lie gets half way around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.

A recent campaign by this outfit in Los Angeles, with a clever offline payoff, yielded millions of dollars from hundreds of financial institutions before being shut down by the FBI. This "double-dip" case was like the woman trying to decide between buying 2 dresses; finally deciding to take both. On a bigger scale, these people have proven that skill in manipulating numbers in a multitasking operation is a talent, not evidence of Divine Guidance.

In the U.S., working partners are known as "Cashiers." Here your job description would involve manufacturing your own cards of all types--credit, debit, social security, gift, from the encoded, stolen information fuelled you by the "Suppliers"
--to extract money from ATMs and point-of-sale terminals. Confucius say: Baby conceived on back seat of car with automatic transmission grow up to be shiftless bastard. But, if you swallowed your pride you could probably work your way in with these people.

But, 2 wrongs are only the beginning. Maybe 3 are better.

If you could not qualify for these 2 options above entry level employment, you could start at the bottom as a "Runner." Your job? To test the cards by checking balances or withdrawing small amounts of money from ATMs and point-of-sale terminals. Purpose? The cashable cards are then used to tap the most lucrative accounts.

Or, short-cut the whole thing. As an alternative, you could hire teenagers to serve as your "Runners" while they are still young enough to know all the answers. Actually, great brainpower is not required for such a lowly position. Your job candidates can be dumber than a box of hair.

This whole thing might sound like having to drive behind and an 18-wheeler in a snowstorm, but that's where risk comes in: big risk, big gain.

But, maybe, just maybe, a little too much risk? Sometimes it's best to practice random acts of intelligence, and achieve occasional feats of self-control. Even artificial intelligence beats human stupidity.

So, on the other hand, you might wish to reconsider this whole concept of "joining up." Why? On the grounds that it is always darkest before you open your eyes.
Once full realization of the possible consequences hits you--social condemnation, fines, imprisonment--you could well conclude that it would be preferable to be on a first-name basis with the people at your unemployment office.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Scam Artists' Focus: Senior Citizens Make Best Targets

--Scheme, Ream, and Cream--War Cry of the Scam Artists as they single out Seniors for their Con Games

When you talk to God, you're said to be praying. But, when God talks to you, you're said to be a psycho.

Sadly, it is the latter mental state many elderly people are driven to by scam artists.

Good judgment comes from experience, and al lot of that comes from bad judgment. Along with declining mental acuity, which accompanies this ageless truism, comes a more susceptible stance, on the part of senior citizens, to getting suckered by scam artists. When elders get to the point of thinking Christmas tree lights look better on a pumpkin, they are close to going over the edge. And, tragically, this is the low level of reasoning-grip many have been driven to by the scam artists.

Often, also accompanied by declining comprehension, seniors can no longer outlast the Energizer Bunny either. Advanced age signifies that "getting a little action" only means their Phillip's Milk of Magnesia is working.

Why does this combination induce such gullibility?

Here are some of the reasons:

1) Older citizens are more likely to own their own home, have good credit, and posses a nest egg, making them inviting targets. It's said that anybody can live to be 100, if they give up all the things that make them want to be 100. It's surprising how many older folks do just this, stretching their life expectancy. The scam artist is aware, and aims his guns accordingly. He knows they are only young once, but can be immature forever in managing their often times formidable assets.

2) These victims are less likely to report a fraud, because they don't know where to turn, are ashamed for having been scammed, or are concerned that family members may come to the "failing mental capacity" conclusion. It's no solace to think: If you are poor when you're old, at least you won't have to worry about your children having you declared legally insane in order to get control over your estate. And, still another lesson of life that might be learned could be: Be kind to your friends; you may need them to empty your bed pan some day.

3) The scam artist knows that, even when the elderly victim reports a scam, he / she often cannot provide all necessary details to be used as evidence--due to Alzheimer's onset, senility, other forms of dementia, or the just plain forgetfulness of age. (They know this particular group of victims is getting old when they consider Happy Hour to be time for a nap.) How to marshal flashbacks without selectively sanitized nostalgia, or other mental interference, is a real problem for the elderly. Plus, a mind as overcrowded as an auctioneer's warehouse is a difficult reservoir from which to flush facts.

4) Individuals who grew up as part of the so-called "Greatest Generation"--1930s to 1950s--are thought to be more trusting, more polite, more willing to patiently listen to sales pitches. These people, therefore, make up a prime market for scam artists of all types. To the scam artists' thinking, age does not always bring wisdom; sometimes age comes alone. Life is hard, then you nap.

More simply, in all, growing old is mandatory; growing wise is not necessarily a tag-along component. So, the wrap-up is that, through simple chronology, the elderly make up a prime market for scam artists. So many of these cons are premised on easy money, greater security, and extended life spans (medical and health related scams proliferate). All those things that make seniors a natural target.

It all comes down to this: simple restraint must be exercised. in dealing with scam artists, the elderly should remember a fundamental piece of logic: Never try to milk a bull.

This clear identification, and avoidance, of the scam artist species would save them much in terms of their painstakingly-constructed estate, as well as retaining a grip on their self-respect.

Full recognition of an imperative, drastic change in their overall life style is a "must"--once their wild oats have turned to prunes and All-Bran.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Grand Jury Subpoena Via Email--If you get One, What will You Do?

--Cyber Criminals' New Stretch--Subpoenas to Appear Before a Grand Jury, Transmitted by Email, No Less--Latest Innovative Scam by the Con Man

A cat will blink when hit in the head with a Ball Peen Hammer.

An equally severe blow is If you receive an email ordering you to appear before a Grand Jury as a witness, under threat of a Contempt of Court proceeding. What would you do? a) Verify it by checking it out with the Court? b) Report it to police authorities? c) Comply with the terms? Or, d) Soil yourself?. Do nothing more, out of sheer mental paralysis brought on by fear?

When you are suckered, robbed, spit on, knocked down, and kicked by the cyber criminals, you could ask yourself, what would Clint Eastwood do?

But, when you've learned that you can keep on puking long after you think you've finished, there are good, logical, less violent answers, too: a and b would be the only "way to fly"...c would be a gift of your identity to a con artist...and, d) would only be messy, and wouldn't accomplish anything.

Don't trust anyone who bleeds for a week and doesn't die. This is the premise the cyber criminals are working on, the reason for the fierce bludgeoning It is therefore up to you to speedily throw up a staunch defense to stop them cold.

Slick. This new scam of the cyber criminals has all the trappings: You are commanded to testify before a Grand Jury. The email flashes its claim to "authenticity" by including a case number, code, full name and address of the supposed Federal Court involved, with room number, and even a phony court officer's name and court seal.

What's the catch? How does this cyber criminal score?

As soon as you click on the designated link supplied--gotcha. Malicious code will be downloaded onto your computer, a virus which will gobble up your personal data so as to construct a personal profile of you. In short, identity theft.

Heavy handed? You bet. The email "subpoena" contains language threatening you with Contempt of Court charges if you fail to appear. This, of course, menaces you with a fine, and/or, imprisonment. (Like microwaving cats for fun and profit.) As someone peering into a mirror for signs of illness, you now feel like you're inflicted with a touch of madness. But, don't forget, a bird in hand makes it harder to blow your nose Thus, we urge you again, for emphasis. mount a quick defense.

Among other things, report it to:

......then get on with a full report to Police or FBI, as previously noted.

You always get the greatest recognition for the job you least like. But remember, this is not exactly like getting a traffic ticket for overtime parking and trying to cop out by pleading insanity. This is something you must do, rationally.

On the keyboard of life always keep one finger on "Escape."