A Stranger Just Paypal'd Me $475, And Other Scams

The more you read it, the more stuff you find.

This is fun!


Stop the steal!

So about 6 weeks ago, when I tried to buy circil water flavors from a fraudulent website, I had over 20 charges to meta pay. Got a new card, and they refunded me the money.

Couple weeks later, I got a call from a scammer pretending to be from my bank, and long story short, i gave him access to my online banking and he tried to take about $1700. Closed all my accounts and opened new ones, feeling like the biggest idiot in the world. I’m kind of worried about what ill fall for in my 70s, if I’m doing this in my 40s.

Now this week, new acount, new card, I have about 20 deposits from meta pay. All between $1-3 each. That looks a lot like the ones that were already reversed to the old account. I need to go and see if they are from the same people or not.

Should I just ignore them and let them figure it out? The only thing I’v used meta pay for is the oculus 2, and haven’t updated the payment info on it since before this all happened, so its pretty weird.

Got what appears to be a scam email this morning:

“Regrettably, your Social Security number has been temporarily suspended due to the discovery of suspicious and illegal activities during our investigation.”

Etc. Etc.

A single Google search provides a number of identical instances. Not very imaginative, and I love the “suspicious AND illegal” bit.

Also, I’m pretty sure your SSN cannot be “suspended.”

I think the fear is that your SS monthly check gets suspended. Mine starts next month, so I assume that is why I am targetted now.

Ah, makes more sense.

If there is a Hell (hard to believe we need a place called Hell, as INXS once said), there is a particularly horrible part reserved for these telescam fuckers who prey on vulnerable people.

I’m still getting calls trying to scam my dead father through various avenues, because they have found something through the process that associated my phone number with his identity. I’m not proud of it, I admit I’ve started getting pretty fucking nasty on those calls. For the most part the worker bee doesn’t deserve it 1/100th as much as the organizer/crime boss but I can’t yell at him. The only reason I’m not scorched earth is that I assume there’s a special “This guy was super nasty to us, put him on the full fuck-with” list somewhere.

You unbeliever, Hell is absolutely a real place!
I’ve even been there & laid my eyes on that place of purgatory and it was… actually quite boring?

Ugh - the titular scam just happened to me. Woke up to having an 1100$ pending incoming transfer from someone on Zelle to my bank account.
Just called the bank - they’re going to cancel it since its still pending. Hopefully they will - do not need to deal with my bank accounts getting frozen for a fraud investigation when someone reports it down the line…

You would think Zelle or Paypal or whoever would have a way to recognize this, accept the transfer, contact the sending institution to confirm, then tell the scammer to go pound sand when they tried to claw it back. I suppose the sending app or whatever in these situations is also in on it?

Well, PayPal isn’t a bank in the same sense that Chase or TD or whatever is, I don’t think. You don’t get the same protections like FDIC and FSLIC, etc. So maybe they aren’t required to follow the same sorts of security and validation protocols. And perhaps they just don’t care, either–that seems to be the case most of the time.

They have most of the functions though, like routing numbers and whatnot. Seems like they could “seal the deal” on the scammer and just let you keep the money, but I’m talking out my ass here.

I’m sure they could, though there may be laws around that sort of thing I guess that would make it less likely. But ultimately, I don’t think they really see it as worth their trouble. If there are scams, most of the time they can just wash their hands of it.

They make money off the transaction if it goes through at the end of the day.

Their whole system is : “People use this, we make a transaction fee off of each time they do it.”

They made nearly $40 off that transaction. I assume they’d make nothing if they just killed it before it happened and they could easily end up in court if they just took it.

Edit: Heck, imo, fraud is a big part of PayPal’s business model.
Just a personal anecdote.

Mom wanted me to use her credit card to buy something from somewhere. I forget where. They wouldn’t take the card, because the shipping address for her sister didn’t match the billing address or some other horseshit on their end. But they were more than happy for me make a PayPal account, put her card on the account and use that. PayPal was happy to take that credit card (my name on the account not hers) and charge it with basically no questions asked and no proof of who I was.

I almost got scammed last week. I was expecting a call from a doctor so I picked up a random call. They said they were from … something like ‘Administrative Services’ and they were sending out plastic Medicare cards to replace the paper ones. They got my address and I gave them my Medicare activation date but when they asked for the number on the card I got suspicious. I told them if they were giving me a new card and had my address, there’s no legit reason I needed to give them the number. And I hung up.

Did some googling and the ‘plastic Medicare card’ scam is a tried and true scam. They want your number to commit medical fraud by (I think) filing false claims.

I am usually pretty on the ball about scams so I can’t believe I almost fell for this. I’m going back to never answering the phone if I don’t recognize the number!

I get healthcare scams all the time now too.

They claim they are from United Health Care, and they are offering a service to patients where an RN will call you on a weekly/monthly basis to discuss an ongoing medical issue. The first time they called I went through a bunch of the call, they said it was for the “COPD” that was reported. This is not a diagnosis that I received, it was a diagnosis that was floated by my pulmonologist at one time while we were looking for a diagnosis, but it was one that was thrown out.

I can only guess I googled COPD at some time, and they had my info from some site and put those 2 together. They also know my employer that they mentioned it on the call.

They did transfer me to an “RN” who spoke in an American accent, so they have a 2nd level of scam going on here. I declined the service.

I assume they charge your insurance for this, and don’t provide much. Your insurance either covers it or denies it.

The phone number comes up as “UnitedHlthcare” and they keep calling despite me declining the service.

A quick google search of the number found that this is happening to a lot of people. I have to imagine it is phone numbers/medical info that was gained through some sort of hack. From one of the scam call phone number lookup sites:

(651) 273-0795 called repeatedly claiming to be United Healthcare with important messages about our benefits. Phone reception was poor and I couldn’t really understand them because of the heavy accents. They knew who private insurer was as well as the name of family member who had recently had major surgery. They even left messages requesting we call them back at 855-318-7347 OR the number on the back of our medical card. The latter part is intended to make them seem legit. Of course, we called the number on the the back of our insurance card and United Healthcare said it was definitely not them, and they had NOT been trying to reach us concerning benefits.

Pretty smart, giving you a fake callback #, and then saying use that or the back of the card. How many people are going to fish out the card when they gave you a # to call.

The problem is it’s a relentless onslaught by these scammers. It only takes one time catching you in a weak moment and they may succeed.

I imagine that this is the sort of situation they hope they will run into by blanket calling everybody. That happened to my wife with somebody purportedly from the Canada Revenue Agency (the Canadian federal tax department). She was in a dispute with them over her tax amount so a call from the CRA was no unexpected. While she was arguing with the person on the phone and before any personal information was taken, I was able to get her attention and point out that the CRA would not be calling her at 8 pm. Government hours you know.