An Indiana woman, who is a loyal Amazon shopper, nearly fell victim to a scam where a caller pretending to be an Amazon representative almost bilked her out of $500.
They Sounded Real
Becky Farmer was stunned when a voicemail from the retailer notified her of a purchase she didn’t make. “The first thing I thought was ‘oh no … someone has my account number and they are going to be ordering stuff.'”
Famer spent nearly an hour on the phone with the person, giving her bank card information and even allowing them to take control of her computer at one point. However, it was the persistent questioning that alarmed her and made her suspicious.
They Asked Too Many Questions
“When they asked for my WiFi number… no one has ever asked for my WiFi number. That’s when I hung up,” she said, stopping a nearly $500 Western Union transaction by scammers.
The incident did cost Farmer when she took her computer to her local Best Buy to have it checked out for spyware. That $100 spent, was minimal, she says, for the peace of mind it brought her.
“I am just glad they aren’t able to get into any of my accounts,” Farmer said with relief.
What To Do
Indiana authorities say there are many ways callers scam people. Pretending to be representatives of trusted companies with whom consumers likely do business is just one way.
Chris Proffitt of the Indiana Attorney General’s Office warn consumers, “Don’t do anything over the phone until you find out who is calling you because the chances are very good that if you receive a call, they are not from Amazon.”
A Lesson Learned
As for Farmer, she is going to be more careful and scrutinize calls more thoroughly.
“I would not take any phone calls anymore. I mean even if they say they are from the IRS, I am calling them. They are not going to call me.”
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About the Author: Aisha K. Staggers is a writer, lecturer, political analyst and literary agent. She appears weekly for “Staggers’ State of Things” on the Dr. Vibe Show. Her work has been published by Paper Magazine, AfroPunk, The Spool, GREY Journal, MTV News, HuffPost, Blavity, Atlanta Blackstar, For Harriet, New York Review of Books and a host of other first-run publications and syndicated outlets. Find her on Twitter @AishaStaggers. For more of her work, check out her page here!