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Scams, Too

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What’s worse than losing money to a scammer? Losing more money to another scammer claiming to help you recover from the first one.

Yep; this really happens. It works like this: Con artists contact you because you’re on their lists of people who lost money to scams. For a “small fee” or “donation” upfront, they promise to recover the money you lost from a prize scheme, bogus product offer, or some other scam. 

Sometimes, they try to get you to contact them by putting their offers of “help” in the comments section of blog posts or online articles about scams. Some crooks claim to be from a government agency to appear trustworthy. Others pretend to be actual victims who got (supposed) help from some (fake) agency or company.

But it’s all just a scam, too — another way for a scammer to profit from your loss. They’re after your money, and if you share your payment information, they’ve got it.

Here’s how you can avoid these recovery scams:

  1. Don’t pay upfront for a promise. Someone might ask you to pay in advance for things – like help with recovering from a scam. Consider it a no-go if they ask you for money before they provide any “help”.
  2. Don’t send money or give out personal information in response to an unexpected text, phone call, or email.  
  3. Do online searches. Type the name or contact information into your favorite search engine with the term “complaint” or “scam.”
  4. Sign up for the FTC’s free scam alerts at for the latest tips and advice about scams.

And if you find yourself scammed after being scammed, file a complaint with the FTC.

Tagged with: imposter, online, prize, scam
Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit


These announcements need to be delivered to the many people who do not have access to internet. They are the most vulnerable. Local news, senior centers etc.

And public/private libraries. A notice was specific to help for libraries just about a month ago and it was very important for them.

Very true! What a great idea! I did not think of that but you are absolutely correct about that. Many people could be helped, especially senior citizens.

I have ppl posing as military but when I go to their Facebook page they have couple of pics and no back ground. We chat and next thing I know they ask for money

I have reduced scams by not putting my photo on Facebook.

I do that to and I haven't had a scam. Ever.

I volunteer for the Montgomery County Police Dept. in Maryland for an outreach program called Keeping Seniors Safe. I have used many of the FTC's tips and newsletters on the topics of frauds and scams to design my presentation at senior centers. Thanks so much for all your clear and insightful information.

I keep receiving phone calls tell me if I don't pay myself pass due taxes, I will be arrested. I haven't had to file a tax return since 2005.

Is that all? I've been called twice by a robotic voice that says the FBI has a warrant out for my arrest because of unpaid taxes. And I am to call (phone number I can't remember). It's a SCAM so don't worry and certainly don't call the number. You may want to consider calling the IRS they can ensure you don't have any back taxes.

IRS never call taxpayer neither send e-mails. IRS send letters. Don't pay any attention to those calls

No Mkl that is just the only one I listed.

I received one of these calls June20th. Wanted me to drive 35 miles where I could buy the card to send them the money. I went along with him, he left a line open and wanted to know what I was waiting for. Want me to let him know when I got in my car, etc. Ended call as I thought he might have a GPS. I am a registered tax preparer so knew it was a scam as well as he couldn't tell me for sure what year it was I owed for.

Yes me too,here is the # 202-888-4484

How can you help people who lost their money like me from scam? Now I'm paying the money that I lost from scam worth 20k.

If you report the scam to law enforcement, there could be a case against the person or business that scammed you.

For example, you would report to different agencies if you had a mortgage scam or an investment scam, or a problem with a builder or a car dealer. You can start by reporting to the FTC at You could contact your state Attorney General’s office for information about which agencies take your kind of complaint.

Once again, I have to say that these people wouldn't scam so many if the government gave the FTC any real authority to stop them. There is the new bureau for consumers who have the "teeth" to take on those who steal identities, scam and defraud, but what it takes to get them to do anything is often difficult for the average person to do. I have tried using them for prob,eps I have had with one of the Credit Reporting agencies for years, but by the time it would have taken me to get hold of all my proof, I was too worn out or discouraged to keep going.

This is just me, I am handicapped with chronic pain and chronic fatigue so it isn't unusual for me to decline due to stress. I could have and would have done all that was necessary before the stress of all of these problems, as well as the change in society where no one cares, but now am as I said I am in no shape to continue working on it. Bottom line, people like me who were actively willing to do what needed doing was told to often (by one of the Senators here in Oregon as well as every other Representative in Washington who represent ) that there are no existing laws to stop these agencies from doing what they do.

I was consistently told that "They are too powerful". In the end people give up, and believe me I have always been like a dog with a bone when I saw a wrong. I wanted them made right and went the distance to try to make them so. Until we get the type of government that will actually worry less about reelection and more about their constituents this problem will only get worse. Based on one of the presumptive Presidential candidates we may have already gone to far to ever recover. When I die this country may very well be in the hands of the lunatics. I love my country and hate that I have come to feel as I do.

I truly understand your pain. Like you I suffer from RSD (a rare form of CRPS), & a bunch of other stuff - which has turned this Lion into a lamb. Unfortunately, we have to pick & choose our battles. Stress kills us. It makes us flare & in severe pain for wks or months. Idk how bad yours is but mine is Severe. I was almost conned & I should of known better. But when I'm in pain is very hard to think clearly. I'm sorry it's hard when ur a type A living in a type C body. It drives me crazy.

Enjoyed article. I was scammed but I also read that your money can never be recovered no matter what. This article confirmed that.

I couldn't be more grateful for your help, I am going to do my best to spread the word about you. Thank you as always.

I don't answer any number I don't recognize and I don't answer my door after I get home from work, unless friends call ahead.


I get calls each day from these clowns but as soon as I see the number on my cell, I simply reject the call. They're everywhere including the internet. Being on the defensive side works for me.

Yes, I agree that things like this need to be more accessible offline to the most vulnerable potential victim populations.

I continue constantly all day receiving calls from area code 876 which is Jamaica.

Please help me, i have fallen for a guy who messages me saying he is a Military Doctor, his name is Gary Deric Ferdinand he says he is widowed and has a 9yr old son, he has never asked me for money but has now asked me for name address and a proof of ID. He says he retires soon and hopes we can be together then, he says he loves me please does this sound like a scam?

This could be a scam. You can read these FTC articles about romance scams and online dating scams, and watch this short video to learn more.

I would not trust someone who I've never met and they say they love me. This is not normal. And, I would not give any personal information to someone online. Too many evil people looking to do harm. You really don't know who's on the other end of the email.

You might enter his name on the internet on a web site that lists people who have a criminal past. You might contact the military (good luck with that). I think it would be dangerous to give this person any form of ID. I hate to make you feel sad, but this is just too scary. I would hate it even more if this guy hurts you physically or financially.

Thank you for your help if i would delete my message asking for advice i would as i have now found out this lovely gentleman is true and it is not a scam so there are some good ones out there

Joyous, If you want a comment removed, please send a comment that includes your contact information. I won't publish your personal information. I will contact you to learn about your request. Thank you. Bridget Small

Get rid of him. I have been scammed by one person for thousands of dollars and 2 others tried to scam me. I also "met" someone online and he stated he was in the Army and stationed in the Ukraine training their soldiers. He was a widower and had a 12 yo son that lived with his late wife's mother. We texted a lot back and forth and I thought we had something. He was supposed to be coming home and then would be retiring at the end of this year. He did ask me for $$ for his son. I unfortunately sent $ (only $150 even though he had asked for $800) because it was for his son and he felt bad that he couldn't do anything for him and he hadn't been able to keep some promises due to the service. We continued to text, were talking about when he was coming home, when I never heard from him again. This was shortly after I had sent the $$. If you haven't met him, then be really careful. Google him..... and don't give him your address or ID... He should be doing that for you.

Thank you for your kind words, i am so sorry you were scammed why do bad things happen to good people? I really hope you find happiness, all good wishes to you

Well, Huggy you are so right!!! i hope to haven that this country does not fall in the hands of the lunatics but so far its not looking good unless more peoples get out of their comfort zone and wake up !!!

With the two characters we have running for the office of PRESIDENT, that is a scam in the making!

I feel for you Huggy. I am in a similar physical state and having to deal with these crooks who try to take our money is just one more thing we have to put up with besides our pain. I heartily agree with everything you said. I also agree with Ann. I mean really, what has this country come to when we have two such distasteful people running for President. One has little experience dealing with the inertia in the government. The other is way too ambitious for my taste. Seems anything is all right as long as she gets elected.

I applied for a personal loan with several online companies, advance cash max confirmed my application and told me that to verify that my account was in good standing and that I'm not a robot for me to buy a ITunes gift card for$300 and give them the code and once the code was verified that they would transfer my loan into my account, a few minutes late I was informed that the money transfer didn't go through so they wired it via western union but before they give me the confirmation number I have to pay them another$300 for the amount that it will cost them to wired me the money, I realized that I have been scammed but was out of $300

Thank you for your help with scams. But, when will stronger laws be mad to protect us?

I had the scammers try to tell me they were from Dell computer...I had a virus and needed to spend several hundred to fix it. At this point I hung up.

I don't answer calls from numbers I don't recognize. I wait for them to leave a message. Many don't, but I get messages saying they are IRS and I need to call them about mistakes the last time I filed. One said if I didn't call them back immediately they were going to sue me. One thing to remember--the IRS NEVER calls anyone about anything.If they want to contact you it will be by regular mail. IRS scams should be reported to the Treasury Dept. at this link:

In filing with 5 or more departments in the agency two generals officials of some kind got in touched and only to hear that they couldn't do anything because it is out of the jurisdictions when the company admitted that the broker did was indeed improper misleading and to fraudulent in scamming me and for that the broker was fired. Because it was done in London that they (finance businesses) cannot give more guidance or helping me in getting this settled but I have a strong feeling that they get more worked up on if the client have much more lost in the hundred thousands and in the millions to get any agency attention that is my evaluation experience in sending my dispute with these businesses.

All of the above comments are true and says a lot about what kind of world we are leaving to our children. My issue is with the cable companies that allow us to block calls, which I feel they should be able to do, but set a limit of how many we can block. Mine allows 32, but I have heard some are less. I filled my 32 in about 2 months! Now what? I have been on this list foe years, set up a list for my carrier to block and now I'm at a dead end. Any ideas how we can force those that give out these numbers be responsible?

This FTC article has information about blocking unwanted calls.

I received job offer as Mystery shopper, once I got the check, I was cautious enough to check/verify through the bank who issued the check. Come to find out that it was fake check. Just to share my experience, so you people dont fall for mystery shop. Thank you.


I was sent a check by Tonya Beam to purchase products from me. She sends a check for a lot more than what is needed. She tells you to keep what you need then wants you to send the difference to another person in another state. The checks are drawn on a bank in Florida on a account that doesn't exist but the address on the envelope the check arrives in comes from another state. She will email and text you daily asking if you have received the check and deposited it and when you will be forwarding the money to requested address. Don't fall for this.

I get calls from outside of the US, asking me for computer work. I tell them I don't have a computer. They proceed to call me every hour, literally every hour. Can this be stopped?

Change your phone number.

I have had several scams pulled on me. One was a very mean sounding voice from the IRS, the second with a women's voice word for word message as the first one except her words were so slow it was almost funny.I did nothing but hang up, and they haven't come after me yet.

Another one that is still calling me, comes from India.But the first time the caller ID said Covenant Hospital which is only 60 miles from where I live. My sister lives very close to there so I answered the call. it was someone who said they were calling from India, he wanted by bank account number so he could refund my money from a purchased from there. He wanted to give me a refund and he could only do it by computer. I refused I ask him why he couldn't just send a check? He just kept saying by computer is the only way. I told him I would loose my refund before I would let him into my bank account One time my caller ID said I was getting a call from my very own name and number. SO, now I only answer calls which are a name or number I recognize. He still calls every several days, sometimes he will leave a message. He sounds almost desperate. May be he is not meeting his quota for the day.

I got a voice mail message from a woman, who said she was from the law offices of Joel Cordis, Norristown, Pa. 610-239-7147 or 610-382-5137, informing me of a debt I owe. I have not had any debt in years. I have not called this number, nor will I. I don't answer the phone if it a number I don't recognize. I am at the max of 32 call numbers I can block. I just wished I could stop all the calls. I get an adverage of one to two calls a day from numbers I don't know. I'm 76, just smart enough not to talk to these people.

Thank you for alerting the public about these scams.


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