Entries Tagged 'Awful Scams' ↓

Sirius “Your account is past due” email scam

Sirius XM Radio, congratulations on joining my list of Awful Companies. Until this week, I would have had nothing bad to report about Sirius Radio, but that all changed due to your subscription renewal scam:

You have emailed me several times telling me that my account was “Past Due” and that I needed to make a payment ASAP. You’ve also called me this week using those same words.

My account is not past due. My subscription was simply up for renewal in several weeks. Your deceitful ways of trying to get a renewal out of me have failed. I am very protective of my credit, and when I someone calls me to tell me my “account is past due” and that I OWE money, I take it very seriously.

Sirius Email Scam

And this is how Sirius radio gets your attention. Nothing is past-due. I do not owe any money. I have no obligation to pay them another dime, yet they impersonate a debt collector in a shady attempt to get you to renew your service. If you received one of these emails and do not owe a debt, I suggest filing a complaint with the BBB. Hint: search for “Sirius XM Radio” when looking for the company on the BBB’s website.

Another Craigslist Home Rental Credit Report Scam

In my never-ending search to find a decent home to rent, I came across ANOTHER scam. This one was much more polished than the last Craiglist Credit Report scam I posted about, but still operates in the same way:

The ad looked legit. They had pictures, and they even provided a valid neighborhood in the “location” field rather than just using the city name of the Craigslist page. Unlike the last scam, they scammer didn’t provide an email address on the page. I had to email via the Craigslist mailer. Here is what I got back from nicoleheinz63@yahoo.com:

Hello,

The property is still available for rent. The water is included, I also pay for lawn care so the tenant does not have to cut the grass. Pets are allowed as long as they are well behaved I will be happy to show the house at an agreed time and date but I do require that all applicants complete a free credit report to ensure their eligibility. I do not give out the exact address of my rental property before I am able to show them. The reason is that the home is vacant, and I wouldn’t want people trying to break in.

Please go to the following link to complete the free credit report: click here [link removed]

Please do not send me your credit report! Once you complete your report please send me over your report number, with that information I can provide it to the report company and they will let me know if you had any evictions in the past 5 years. This is the only information that I am interested in.

Let me know when this is done and we can then work out the time and date to go see the house.

Regards,

Nicole Heinz

The link provided in her emailed was a link to a free credit report website, again, with an affiliate ID attached. If you haven’t figured out how this scam works yet: You sign up for a “free” credit report. The scammer gets a commission from your sign up, and you never hear from anyone again.

Credit Report Craigslist Scam

This was a pretty good scam I uncovered today.  I was browsing craigslist for a new place to live this September when I ran across this ad in the housing/apartments section:

Very large and spacious 3 bd 2bthrm with great upgrades Screened lanai gated access community Act now and only need first month to move in

email me at
gabriellaecj@gmail.com

Looks promising. It even included some nice looking pictures. I emailed gabriellaecj@gmail.com simply to ask where the house was. I got this as a response:

Hi,
Thank you for your intrest in our rental property.
It is at the moment still available for occupancy.

Here is a copy of our rental application, Print it out.
www.unitedrentalproperties.com/rentalapp.pdf In PDF format
www.unitedrentalproperties.com/RentalApplication.doc In Word format

We dont do a check on your rental history or a background check but we do require a credit check. In order to rent any of our properties you must have a credit score of 450 or higher. I do make exceptions but you must bring a copy of your report and an explanation.

You can get a copy of your score free below
http://www.unitedrentalproperties.com/freecreditreport.html

Do not email it to me just bring it with you.

We do not require a security deposit or pet deposit on this property.

Unlike most properties you wont be charged an application fee or credit check fee because you will bring your own.

Renting this property is of my highest concern so if you dont act quickly it may get rented before you.
Hopefully I can walk you through the property either tomorrow or within the next few days appointments will be handled in the manner they were recieved.

Regards,
Russell

Okay, he didn’t answer my question, but it still looks legit. The application forms looked normal, but knowing a bit about credit history and credit reports, I thought the “450 minimum score” seemed a bit low. People that file bankruptcy usually have a better score than this. I followed the link to the credit report, and it was simply a redirect to this site:
http://www.nationalcreditreport.com/

He also had is affiliate ID in the URL (1119). This is how the scam works. You fill out all that stuff and do the credit report on the site, and this guy makes 20 bucks from the deal. The house doesn’t even exist.

Union Workers Credit Services Scam

If you receive a letter like this, beware! They simply take your 37 dollar “membership fee” and you’ll probably hear nothing ever again. I received this letter yesterday, and I live in the Pensacola, FL area.

This letter looks legit.. they even have a website: http://www.unionworkerscredit.com

But the fact that they asked for no information other than my signature raised a few flags. Their website is also littered with ads, not very professional.

Here is the letter. Click to enlarge:

Union Workers
Credit Services
1327 Empire Central
Suite 130
Dallas, TX 75247

Credit Limit: $10,000 for: (my name)
Member Status: PLATINUM
Classification: PRE-APPROVED
Expires: 04/01/09
Interest Rate: 5% APR
Credit Provider: Union Workers Credit Services
Address: (my address)
Bank Affiliation: None
Service #: (number)
Approval #: (number)
*Applicable Law: Florida

CONGRATULATIONS (name)!

It’s nice to inform you that you have been identified and PRE-APPROVED for a PLATINUM CARD Membership from Union Workers Credit Services with a GUARANTEED $10,000.00 credit limit valid exclusively toward all credit purchases from credit provider!

You don’t have to worry if you have been denied access to a VISA or MasterCard. The UWCS Platinum Card Membership offers many benefits including a LOW, LOW interest rate of 5% APR all because you are PRE-APPROVED.

Full details of your membership and its exclusive benfits will be included with your new Platinum Card. Your satisfaction is assured by a 60 day refund of money guarantee!

This is a limited time offer and all deadlines are final, so act today. Failure to do so may result in your loss of your PRE-APPROVED status. Please enclose your annual membership fee of $37 by check or money order along with the attached Platinum Card Activation Form by the deadline shown below.

note: the $37 is fully refundable with your first purchase using your $10,000.00 credit limit.

(in smaller print):
YOU HAVE BEEN APPROVED FOR THIS PLATINUM CARD MEMBERSHIP OFFER BECAUSE YOU SATISFIED CERTAIN CONSUMER CRITERIA. VISA AND MASTERCARD ARE REGISTERED TRADEMARKS OF VISA INTERNATIONAL AND MASTERCARD, INC. RESPECTIVELY, AND ARE UNAFFILIATED WITH THIS OFFER OR UWCS. CREDIT AMOUNT REFERENCED HEREIN SHALL NOT BE CONSTRUED TO FUNCTION AS ANY TYPE OF MULTI-PURPOSE CREDIT CARD AND IS EXCLUSIVELY APPLICABLE FOR CREDIT PURCHASES FROM UWCS. ADDITIONAL CREDIT MAY BE GRANTED IN THE FUTURE AT CREDIT PROVIDERS SOLE DISCRETION. FAILURE TO RESPOND BY EXPIRATION DATE WILL RESULT IN TERMINATION OF YOUR ELIGIBILITY.

 

Hang up on this number: 571-283-6405

This number has been calling my company’s range of external phone numbers. It is an automated script that announces that you have been selected to receive a free satellite TV. It gives you the option to either “remove yourself from the list” or be connected to an agent.

I recommend you hang up. This is a scam that you want nothing to do with.

Rental Car Minimum Mileage Scam

Budget Car RentalThis last weekend I flew to my home town of Grand Rapids and rented a car from Budget, because it was the cheapest, at $52 dollars after fees and tax. In order to get the keys, I had to sign an interesting document though. It stated that I had to drive the car at least 75 miles or else I would be faced with an additional $75 dollar charge.

This doesn’t make any sense to me. Why would they want me to drive the car further? This they didn’t tell me about this when I made my reservation, and since they didn’t make it very clear when I was actually getting the car, I’m classifying this as an Awful Scam. It’s only because I read the fine print of what I signed that I knew to drive the car around for awhile before bringing it back.

Awful tip of the day: Don’t use Budget to rent cars.