A Good Scam Is All About The Timing

, , , , | Legal | May 9, 2021

I was interested in buying a new smartphone and saw an offer on the website of a mobile carrier. You had to buy the smartphone and then send a form before the limit date to receive a discount.

I bought the smartphone, sent the form, and waited. I received an email from the company saying that, unfortunately, we had sent the form too late.

What made me laugh? They answered before the limit date, so it could not be more obvious they were lying.

My mother wrote them an email threatening to call our country’s Fraud Service and they promptly gave us the discount.

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A Credit Rating That Never Dies

, , , , | Right | April 28, 2021

I’m a customer service representative for a credit card company. It’s my first day.

Caller: “My card needs to be updated; my last name has a typo.”

He gives me the details, but I cannot find his account, which I tell him.

Caller: “It’s my wife’s card. Her name is [Wife].”

I get the account open and see that his name is not on it.

Me: “Can I speak with your wife?”

Caller: “She’s been dead for eleven years, but I still use her card.”

I transferred him to the fraud department!

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Gosh, Is There Anything That Isn’t Fraud Anymore?

, , , , | Legal | April 13, 2021

I work for a construction-related carded system in the inbound call centre that sells the cards. All cards have qualification requirements; some are one-day courses and others are full university degrees and multi-year NVQs (National Vocational Qualifications). We have access to a database of individuals that work within the construction industry or have taken construction-related courses.

I’ve informed this caller that he doesn’t have any of the qualifications on his file needed to get a gold bricklaying card, and I ask if he’s done anything more than his carpentry NVQ 1 qualification.

Caller: “No. I’ve only done the carpentry one. But I need the gold brikkie card.”

Me: “I wouldn’t be able to do the gold card, then, sir, just the green carpentry one. The system doesn’t allow overrides; it has to be in the file to produce the card.”

Caller: “Can’t you just… add one in? One of them NVQs, level 3?”

Me: “No, sir.”

Caller: “Why the h*** not?!”

Me: “That’s fraud, sir.”

Caller: “I won’t tell anyone, sweetheart.”

Me: “The calls are recorded, sir.”

Caller: “Oh.”

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One Large Scammer Slammer With Extra Stupid, Please

, , , , , , , | Working | February 11, 2021

At the pizza shop I work for, if a person calls in for delivery, we ask how they want to pay. If they want to pay with a card, we have to enter their card information into the system. After we confirm the authorization on the payment, we have no way to see the credit card number. If you were to print the ticket, it would only show the last four numbers of the card with the authorization number. 

One day, it’s just my general manager and me in the store. I walk out from the back and she’s on the phone.

Manager: “Again, I’m so sorry. I will definitely look into that ASAP. Tell the officers to come in and ask for [Manager] and we’ll do whatever we can.”

After she hangs up, she pulls a stack of credit card receipts out of the safe and begins going through them. She hands me a small slip of paper that she’d been writing on while on the phone.

Manager: “Do me a favor and look at last night’s transactions and try to find these three totals. A customer got delivery last night and was charged three different times on her card. I need to see if these totals are in the system and I’m going to see if the signatures match.”

This is easy, as you can organize tickets by their total, and I find and print a copy of all three orders.

Me: “Only one of these is delivery; the other two are from the counter… and have an employee discount added to them.”

She hands me the other receipts and asks me to help her look for those three tickets. She finds the delivery one and I find one of the counter ones and burst out laughing.

Me: “[Counter Person] is a f****** moron.”

It turns out that last night, our counter person wrote down this lady’s entire information, used it to buy two meals for herself, gave herself the employee discount, and then SIGNED HER OWN NAME TO THE RECEIPT. The police arrive and my manager shows them the receipts. She starts talking with them about how [Counter Person] also used this lady’s card to buy $500 worth of stuff online. While this is going on, the phone rings and I answer it.

Counter Person: “Hey, [My Name], can I place an order for delivery?”

She placed the order and, I kid you not, she TRIED TO USE THE STOLEN CREDIT CARD. It didn’t go through because the customer had already canceled it, so she said she’d just pay cash. I always wondered who got there first: the pizza or the cops.

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So Much For “Personal Bonds”

, , , , , | Legal | January 25, 2021

I work for a small contracting and landscaping company. The crew is about a dozen guys, the owner, and me in the office over the owner’s garage. Every Monday morning, I meet with [Owner] to discuss our plan for the week — progress on jobs, bills to be paid, new clients, etc. — and then [Owner] is gone for the rest of the week. He calls or texts to get updates, but otherwise, I almost never see him.

One Monday, we are having our meeting when his phone rings.

Owner: “I have to take this. Play some music or something?”

Me: “Oh, yeah, sure.”

I plug in my headphones.

Owner: *After his call* “Okay, I’ll see you later. I have a few prospective clients today. I’m gonna go to the bank and pay [Vendor] $2,000 today.”

Me: “Sounds good.”

[Owner] often pays bills in person if he’s going to be in the area, as he believes it builds a personal bond between the vendor and contractor. I mark off the bill and go about my day. On Wednesday, [Vendor] calls the office.

Me: “[Landscaping Company]. How can I help you?”

Vendor: “Hey, uh, just a reminder that your bill is overdue.”

Me: “[Owner] paid $2,000 on Monday.”

Vendor: “What?”

Me: “[Owner] said he stopped by.”

Vendor: “No, he never came in. And you owe last month, too.”

Me: “Oh. Uhh… Okay, just a minute.”

I log in to the banking website and see that the money was taken out on Monday.

Me: “Maybe he got caught up. I’ll give him a call and call you back.”

Vendor: *Annoyed* “You need to pay by the end of the week.” *Hangs up*

I call [Owner] but his phone goes straight to voicemail. I leave a message telling him that [Vendor] called, and I explain what I said to them. An hour later, he calls me back.

Owner: “Why did you tell them I’d be there?”

Me: “Because… you said you would?”

Owner: “And I’ll get there. I’m gonna take another $2,000.”

Me: “Okay, for bills?”

Owner: “It’s my money!”

Me: “Your paycheck?”

Owner: “Look, I gotta go. Just don’t worry about it.” *Hangs up*

I was in charge of documenting payroll, so I noted that he’d taken it — tax-free — on our payroll website. I went back through the bank statement against my notes from our meetings and saw that he had taken money from the account every day he’d said he was paying vendors. I contacted each vendor and they all said he hadn’t paid.

[Owner] was out of contact for the next week, not even showing up for the Monday meeting. I called his phone several times but he never answered. I went down to the main house and knocked on the door. Before I could say anything, his wife told me I was fired and closed the door in my face.

Two weeks later, I received a paycheck and a letter from [Owner]’s wife. She had followed [Owner] on one of his “business trips” and found that he had been visiting sex workers and using the company’s money to pay them.

I found out through the workers that [Owner]’s wife had filed for divorce and full custody of their three children. The company went under during the proceedings, and last I heard, [Owner] was in prison.

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