BBB: Hot Topics – March 2022 | #phishing | #scams

 BBB March 2022 Hot Topics


  1. A local consumer reported to BBB that he received a phone call claiming he had missed jury duty in federal court and that he would be arrested if he did not pay via prepaid cards. This is a scam. If you miss jury duty, the court will never call you and demand money or gift card numbers over the phone.
  2. BBB received a report of an employment scam from a local consumer. After applying to a personal assistant job opening, the consumer was told she would be mailed a check to complete job tasks. The check was fake. BBB warns of any employment opportunities that involve cashing a check for job equipment, training, etc.
  3. Consumers continue to receive fake calls claiming to represent LG&E and Duke Energy. Some scam calls even show up as “LG&E” or “Duke Energy” on caller ID. BBB reminds consumers that LG&E will never call and demand payment over the phone to prevent service disruption. When in doubt, contact your utilities provider directly to check the status of your account.
  4. One local consumer reported to BBB that they had been selected to receive a $50 discount on their cable bill; however, they first had to provide their bank account information, birthdate, and other personal information over the phone. Never give out personal information without confirming who is receiving your information. If you receive an offer regarding a discount on a monthly bill, contact the company directly to confirm the offer is real.
  5. Multiple local consumers have reported receiving scam phone calls regarding Amazon accounts. The caller claims a large purchase has been made by the victim’s Amazon account, and that if the victim did not make the purchase, the caller can cancel the order. This is a scam. Amazon does not contact consumers by phone to discuss purchases. When in doubt, log onto your Amazon account to check the status, or contact an Amazon representative directly.  
  6. Consumers continue to report online shopping scams to BBB, including receiving products that were counterfeit or not as advertised. BBB recommends shopping online with well-known retailers and visiting websites directly rather than clicking on ads on third-party websites. Pay by credit card when possible, in case you need to dispute the charge later.
  7. Beware of text messages claiming to be from your boss! BBB warns of scam text messages that know the recipient’s name and place of work, and claim to be the recipient’s boss texting from a new number. The texts ask the recipient to buy gift cards for a client or wire money to another business. Verify any suspicious messages with your boss personally, don’t trust unsolicited messages.
  8. BBB continues to receive reports of scammers claiming to represent Publishers Clearing House. The company does not contact their sweepstakes winners by phone or text, and any sweepstakes that demands a fee upfront in order to claim a prize is a scam!
  9. BBB’s Scam Tracker has received multiple reports of fake auction websites. These sites are phishing for victims’ personal and financial information. Research auctions and auctioneers before participating. Click here for more tips on avoiding auction scams.
  10. March Madness® has returned, and with it, maddening phishing scams. Ignore emails or texts with links to join bracket pools from sites or groups you didn’t request to join – these could be attempts to steal your personal or financial information.

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