This week’s Hacker’s Brief is dedicated to national scams, brought to you by Scambusters.org.
Latest Currency Scam:
It's bad enough that many investors have had their fingers burned in the rout that hit cybercurrency markets recently. Now crooks pretending to be from one of the biggest cybercurrency exchanges, Coinbase, are after what's left. They're trying to con investors into approving a temporary address where all their money will be diverted. If you deal with Coinbase, always work via their website at coinbase.com.
Are you tempted to use one of those mobile apps that enabled you to change your profile pic, for example, by transforming it into a drawing or work of art? Beware. According to security software firm ESET, some profile data harvested in a top-rated app could end up in Russia. Read the small print in the app listing to find out how your personal data will be used.
Baby Formula Shortage Scams:
Watch for fake online ads, websites, emails and text messages with enticing photos showing baby formula on shelves in store aisles. Scammers are taking advantage of current events again. Verify using an out of channel (not on the website, email or text that you were sent) email address or phone number before you purchase. Confirm in a phone book or street map search. Remember poor grammar is a sign of a scam. Talk to your doctor or call your local WIC office to find legitimate sources of formula for sale.
Don't Find Me:
Google has launched a new service that stops your name and other personal information showing up in its search results. Follow this link to begin the process: support.google.com/websearch/answer/9673730
This is the busiest time of year for making vacation rental bookings and scammers are out in force. Book through established agencies and never agree to go offsite to make your payment. According to consumer advocate Michelle Couch-Friedman, that's the biggest red flag warning of a scam.
"Free money" crooks have launched a new scam via hijacked Facebook accounts. They send messages to the person's friends saying their name appears in a list showing they're entitled to thousands of dollars in unclaimed Workers Compensation payments - on payment of a fee. Don't pay. If you think you're entitled to a payment, check with the US Department of Labor (dol.gov) and search from there.
MS-ISAC and CISA Patch Now Alert:
The Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) or the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) has published a patch now (update your software) alert for Atlassian Confluence Server and Data Center, Illumina Local Run Manager, Mozilla’s Firefox, Thunderbird, and Firefox ESR, and Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool (no update available yet, but you can disable the MSDT) products. If you use these products, make sure the software (or firmware) is updated.
Please report scams you may experience to [email protected] to alert your friends and neighbors.
Other ways to report a scam:
- Better Business Bureau Scam Tracker: bbb.org/scamtracker/us/reportscam
- Wyoming Attorney General’s Office, Consumer Protection 307-777-6397, 800-438-5799 or [email protected]
- File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at reportfraud.ftc.gov
- Report your scam to the FBI at www.ic3.gov/complaint
- Reported unwanted calls to the Federal Trade Commission’s Do Not Call Registration. Online at donotcall.gov/report.html or call 1-888-382-1222, option 3
- Office of the Inspector General: oig.ssa.gov
- AARP Fraud Watch Network (any age welcome) Helpline 877-908-3360
- IRS: report email scams impersonating the IRS to [email protected]
- Call the Wyoming Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) for assistance with potential Medicare fraud, abuse, or errors at 1 800 856-4398
- Victim Support: The AARP Fraud Watch Network and Volunteers of America (VOA) created a new, free program to provide emotional support for people impacted by a scam or fraud, called ReST. Visit www.aarp.org/fraudsupport to learn more about the free program and register