The Feds Are Not Giving Individual Citizens $6 Million in COVID Relief:
A Sheridan citizen reported an email impersonating the Janet Yellen and the US Treasury Department (but was really from [email protected]). The subject line was “COVID-19 Relief Fund”. The email requests your personal information in order to be eligible for $6 million of COVID relief funds. CyberWyoming Note: Most US government agencies state that they will not contact you via unsolicited email or text.
A Laramie citizen reported an email that started with “Beloved” and went on to be the typical dying widow who wants you to help her give away her money so she can rest in peace. The email was from [email protected] and the subject line was “MY LAST WISH”. CyberWyoming Note: Whenever an email starts with odd wording like ‘beloved’ your Spidey sense should be tingling.
Tom Crist and $14 Million:
If you receive an email saying you have a charitable donation of over $14 million and you just have to contact [email protected], it is a scam. The email comes from [email protected] and the subject line is ‘Donation’. Reported by a Laramie citizen.
If you receive an email from Robinson C. Douglas at [email protected] with the subject line of ‘Your Response Needed’ asking for your feedback for a position with Optimum Imperial Textiles in the UK, a Laramie citizen wants you to know it is fake. He researched it and there is no such company. The citizen also pointed out that the Robinson C. Douglas name doesn’t match the email address. CyberWyoming Note: polymtl.ca is a real Canadian website for a company based in Montreal and this user’s email has probably been compromised.
Dear Beneficially Is Definitely A Clue That It is Fake:
A Sheridan citizen reported an email from Hon Mrs Janet M Difore at [email protected] that started with ‘Attention Dear Beneficially’. CyberWyoming Note: Sometimes it takes no more than the greeting to identify a fake.
Marketing and Website Unsolicited Emails:
A Sheridan citizen forwarded an email from an online business advisor saying his company could help with her website. CyberWyoming Note: any unsolicited email for business services should be ignored. It is better to ask for local referrals from your Chamber.
Mrs. Alice Johnson Dying Widow Scam:
Because of the 9/6 Hacker’s Brief a scam victim from Malaysia reported his correspondence with “Mrs. Alice Johnson”. It included a snail mail letter, a picture of her in her hospital bed, and emails with a fake bank at www.oaksrock.com (Oaks Rock Bank). The bank, supposedly registered in the UK has a .com address and our research has determined that it doesn’t exist. Also, the US’s BBB has no record of such a bank on their business search. Once scammers get your response, they go out of their way to seem official providing ‘evidence’ like fake websites, correspondence, and pictures. Be suspicious online!
Beware of a New COVID Phishing Email:
The scam description: a company’s human resources office is impersonated and the scammers say that HR is requiring employees to fill out a COVID vaccination status form. The link to the ‘form’ is in the email and it takes the employee to a hijacked web page that impersonates the company or a trusted brand to try to steal the employee’s user id and password. (Note that some of the attacks have come from hijacked real company external accounts, so be sure to train your employees to verify that the email is real before they enter their user information.)
Scambusters.org License Suspension Scam Alert:
Be aware if you are a business professional and need a license to practice. A new scam has emerged in Michigan and is spreading. The crooks pretend to be an investigator from the licensing authority, then a higher level chief investigator, then the FBI or the DEA (depends on the profession). The scam starts with texts and phone calls, sometimes even a conference call with all three ‘investigators’, but also sends a fake letter via special delivery with the victim’s personal licensing information that looks as if it was from the state licensing department.
MS-ISAC Patch Now Alert:
The Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) has published a patch now (update your software) alert for Google’s Chrome browser, Microsoft (pretty much everything – Windows and Office and Edge included), Adobe (lots of products including Reader, Photoshop and InDesign) and Apple (Safari, watchOS, iOS, iPadOS, macOS Big Sur, macOS Catalina, and macOS Mojave) products. If you use these products, make sure the software (or firmware) is updated.
Data Breaches in the News:
United Nations, Fortinet FortiGate Devices, Texas Right to Life (job applicant data exposed), City of Bridgeport (West VA), McDonald’s (Monopoly VIP Database), Dotty’s, Pacific City Bank, Beaumont Health (Michigan), Dallas Independent School District, City of Deerfield (MA), Career Group, DuPage Medical Group (Illinois), Puma, Atlanta Allergy & Asthma, Eskenazi Health (Indianapolis), Town of Peterborough (NH), Chico State University (COVID vaccination data), Revere Health (Utah), Nokia in the US, US State Department, T-Mobile, AT&T, Indiana residents who participated in the contact tracing survey, Chase Bank, Colonial Pipeline, State University of New York, Ford’s website, Waste Management Resources (employee data), and St Joseph’s/Candler (Savannah GA).
- 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 ftccomplaintassistant.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