Online Pharmacy Scams

Have you ever received an email boasting of great prices from an online pharmacy? Buyer beware! Many times these pharmacies operate outside of the U.S. and can take advantage of the lack of consumer protection laws. Many times these pharmacies will offer prescription drugs without a prescription, or offer to get you a prescription from one of there own doctors. The problem occurs when the drug you have received will be diluted, poor quality, medications that have been tainted, or are different drug all together. Some of these websites will start ripping you off by asking for a small membership fee, and some very personal secure information. With the prices for prescription drugs skyrocketing it is not a surprise that we would all look for better prices, but lets not forget that some deals are to good to be true! Here is a list of things to look for when using an online Pharmacy:

  1. Make sure there is a physical address and phone number for the Pharmacy.
  2. They boast of “No doctors prescription needed”,” or we will obtain one for you”.
  3. Prices are unbelievable low.
  4. Uses spam emailing.
  5. Always check the credit card processing page has a https in front of the page address (the S stands for Secure and it must contain the S).

New FBI scam going around.

If you ever received a letter from the FBI on official looking letter head with the director of the FBI on it wouldn’t you think it was real. Maybe not but scam artists rely on the odds. If they mail out a thousand letters they may get back two responses and thats all they need. On the FBI’s scams and warnings page they give examples of how they are being used to target victims. Some of them involve claims of lottery winnings or of large inheritance (they will ask you pay the taxes and fees upfront). They also use letters and emails to extort money from the recipient claiming to be official FBI business. Feel free to contact the FBI by submitting an online inquiry, or at their contact page. The site also has scam alerts and a list of things to watch out for.

Here is a sample checklist you can print out for your parents.

Telemarketing Cheat Sheat

Ask yourself these questions

· Is this a solicitation? Yes___ No___

· Do I know this person? Yes___ No___

· Are they trying to get information? Yes___ No___

· Are they rushing me? Yes___ No___

· Are they offering Freebies? Yes___ No___

· Is this a now or never offer? Yes___ No___

· Is there a big reward with no risk? Yes___ No___

· Are they from outside the US? Yes___ No___

· Refuse to send you information? Yes___ No___

Questions to ask the telemarketer

· Who do you work for?

· Can you send me information?

· What licenses and Insurance do you have?

· What are the risks?

· What’s your Better Business Bureau number?

· Can my family be involved?

Red flag phrases:

You are an instant winner, you must act now, we need to reset your passwords, I can clean up your credit problems, you can make lots of money working from home, you have unclaimed money, Your son or daughter wanted me to call, you requested information, you have a lien on your house, you owe back taxes, can you support our charity

Click here for a printable version.

Beware of online auctions, if it seems to good to be true it probably is.

I ran across an article on msn about how a teenager was able to scam thousands and thousands of dollars from trusting Ebay members. There is no real trick to it just sell a product boasting of high quality or top of the line features, and delivering a product worth fractions of the selling price. In this particular article the boy was selling laptops he purchased in bulk that were obsolete, then made some small changes to them and sold them as high end computers. Sometimes even with pictures of real top of the line computers. This type of scam is also done on many legitimate looking websites. I had a friend who was about to Moneygram money to a company in China, when he looked up the web address using google. Close call because what he found is that this scam had been done to other consumers. When spending lots of money to buy a product that you have never seen you need to do a little research, and until you have proof that it is a legitimate transaction don’t exchange money. You can also check out or page with known scam websites. I received a message saying that I had posted the name of a website, and that it was in error. I asked the sender to send me proof and that I would also do more research on the site. I never heard from him again and I found more sites he authored that had ripped consumers off.

ebay.jpg

Check your bank statements, credit card statements, and medical statements!

Find a certain time of the month to check all your statements. You may be surprised to find things that were purposely charged to your accounts and some that may have accidentally been charged to your accounts. Remember that your medical bills are subject to fraud and accidental over charges. Many people do not question these accounts and not only do they affect your pocket but can increase insurance premiums for everyone. Unfortunately some of our medical professions are subject to making mistakes just like the rest of us. If you monitor your accounts every month you will find mistakes from time to time, and if gone uncorrected can become reoccurring fees out of your pockets. Another good reason to check your accounts is to see where you are spending money and can be a big help in budgeting.

Freight company fraud

Well I Chris Cator the author of this blog has been ripped off big time. You would think that I would be good at sniffing out potential frauds but I got fooled. I use a company called Uship for deliveries and I accepted a bid from a company called ICON Worldwide (funny how the name is “ICON”). The shipment was to be delivered in 3 to 5 days and what a surprise it never showed up. I got excuse after excuse, and was told it will be there next week, and then next week, and then next week. Well $1800 dollars later I am out the shipping money and the $4500 dollars of products. I guess I figured that Uship screens the shippers, but I should have done my research. It is my money and I am the only one who can really protect it. I have disputed the charge with my credit card company but even if I get the $1800 back I am still out my products (for my website Indiasessentials.com). What can be done; nothing really. I submitted a complaint with Uship and maybe they will get rid of them as a member, but I am sure they will be off to a new scam. I guess it is easy for an outsider to detect a scam than someone who has a financial interest in the transaction. Well we will just keep trying.