Scams and spam and malicious links, oh my

Sonja writes about the numerous scams awaiting people on phones and computers

Across the Valley - Sonja Lester

Across the Valley - Sonja Lester

Some of the scams out there are sneaky but some are obvious. Our editor, Thom Barker, got an automated message last week that his SIN number was involved in suspicious activity and he was in danger of being arrested by the RCMP. Instant hang up.

I got a recorded message saying my Social Security Number was shut down because it is involved in a fraud. That’s a laugh and an instant hang up! I don’t have a Social Security Number but I do have a USA phone because of a good data plan while travelling.

And in the USA, an 81-year-old gentleman got several person-to-person phone calls saying that he hadn’t deposited his cheque. They called three times and said “give us your information and we’ll do it for you,”

Phishing!

One scam right now isn’t as obvious and has preyed on customers shopping for kayaks.

My daughter and I ordered fold-up, sit-on-top kayaks from Origami. She saw another company selling for much less and with Origami’s video. She wrote Origami asking what is going on and they thanked her sincerely for letting them know.

When she went on the sites Bandoong and SiFinks they both linked back to the same place in Hong Kong, China.

Several times I have thought that I was clicking on a link only to have my computer desk-top become entirely red with very bold print. It also begins yelling out instructions telling me that I’ve been hacked and it has to be fixed right away by calling a certain 1-800 number.

It even tells me that if I turn off my computer dire things will happen to it. But I have to shut it down because I can’t use my computer. When I turn it back on it comes back up with the same, loud, horrible warning.

I finally left it off until the next calendar day and the hacking didn’t come back up. Now I watch out for copy-cat links.

In my e-mails, almost daily, I get an update from someone saying that my website is good but it can use some help. Always a different name. My turn to have fun as I report spam … I don’t have a website.

This is one more reason I trust a hard copy.

For goings-on in the valley please e-mail sonja.lester.b.c@gmail.com or call 250-847-4414.

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