Scam, Bam, Thank You Ma’am

These scams are getting pretty sophisticated and scary. We all know about the Nigerian Prince who needs you to send him money, in cash or Amazon Gift Cards. Or the business mogal who needs you to transfer some money for currency exchange. But what about other scams that seem legit?

An ex from 17 years ago contacted me today (no, that is not the scam). He said a rude man called him looking for me, and passed on the information. I called and it all sounded very official. I am being sued. Didn’t I recieve the letter of notification? It was sent to my address…I owed $XX amount of money on a credit card opened on this date, closed on this date.

Except it was a credit card that I never had, and account that was never reported on my credit report. I told the man this and he immediately became beligerant.

And when I said that I would need to verify everything before making any payments, he became extremely beligerant and unprofessional, accusing me of being argumentative, and reminding me he was under no legal obligation to offer me any kind of payment plan.

I had to laugh. A payment plan? On an account I don’t have, for an card that doesn’t exist, and an amount I never charged, for things I don’t own?

The first of many red flags is how defensive he got when I said I needed to verify and do my due deligence first. In this day and age of so much fraud and ID theft, any collection agency will understand the desire to verify. That is your (and My) legal right, especially if you have no idea as to the account or charges. Any reputable agency will work to get fraudelent charges straightened out, though you may have to show documentation to prove it’s fraud. If they don’t, report them.

Life is short, too short to be taken in and ripped off by fraudsters and criminals. If they do not accept you verifying the information, they are not legit. And the fact that they contacted my ex made it seem more urgent and legit. They had my ex’s name, number, and even his address, which has been separate from mine for over 15 years. Credit to my ex who called letting me know. I imagine it must have been both concerning and unnerving to get a call like that. Don’t fall for it. These guys know what they are doing.