Fake Bills on the Rise

Fake Bills on the Rise: a reader asks…

I received an email bill from Best Buy for Geek Squad saying that I was charged for services and providing a phone number if I have questions. First off, my bank and credit card apps show that nothing’s been charged. So is this fake or should I call the number to check?

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Do not call the number, or take any other action than to block the sender of that email. You can see by the From email address that it came from a gmail account, not from Best Buy or the Geek Squad. This is a scam, pure and simple. Also known as a phishing attack.

I have seen a dramatic increase over the last few months in fake billings like this, purportedly coming from many different businesses including Fedex, Target, Home Depot, and Norton. The quickest way to tell is to look at the From address. If it’s not showing as from the actual company, it’s fake. Second way is to hover over every link in the email and if any of them don’t show the company’s website, it’s fake.

Under no circumstances should you ever call a phone number provided in any email warnings like this – they are consummate scammers who use psychology very effectively. They manage to convince even well-educated people to give up money, access to their online accounts, access to their computer, etc.

Before you turn over your bank or credit card information, think long and hard. Then, don’t do it, when you are solicited for such information. It’s one thing to give your credit card when buying something you want or need, it’s another when doing so when someone scares you into buying fake protection or other scams.

These scams can come via email, postal mail, telephone, and even someone showing up at your door. Put your suspicion hat on, and don’t engage. The longer you stay in communication with a scammer, the better chance they have at successfully scamming you.


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