The Hackers Brief from Cyber Wyoming is sponsored by First Federal Bank & Trust. Be aware of the latest scams in Sheridan, Wyoming and the rest of the nation.
Elon Musk is not Sending Out Awards
A Laramie citizen reported an email from a Vietnamese email address claiming “You have an award. Contact email@example.com for details.”
Easter Greetings Scam Impersonating Sam’s Club
If you receive an email with 3 Easter Eggs claiming to be from Sam’s Club, don’t click on the egg to see your hidden reward. The email is from an email ending with nerolikeys.com with the subject line of “Congrats, You have been Selected,” and was reported by a Laramie citizen. CyberWyoming Note: This same scam was reported by a different Laramie citizen a few weeks ago.
Email with Subject Line of “My Subject”
A Laramie citizen reported an email spoofing systemart.com (which appears to be a legitimate website) with the reply to address as a Gmail address claiming that a philanthropic foundation in India is “please to inform you that you are one of the lucky people to benefit and receive a million dollars.” These emails are often used to steal your personal information. Do not click on the link in the email.
Two PayPal Email Scams
A Sheridan citizen reported two very poorly written emails with the subject line of “PPLY-77A7a-APRIL-7” impersonating PayPal. The emails were a thank you for renewing PayPal membership and the phone numbers were spaced very strangely, ex +1 ( 2.0.5 ) – 4.1.9 etc. The emails were from two different Gmail addresses spoofed as “BillingConfirmationj”. (Note the spacing and the extra letter at the end.)
McAfee Support Team with a Gmail Address
An out-of-state citizen reported a scam email claiming to be a receipt for purchasing McAfee antivirus software. Dead giveaways in the email were “Dear user”, some poor wording, the Gmail sender’s address, and the amount of $349.89 when the real antivirus software retails for under $40.
Pro Tip from First Federal Bank & Trust, Sheridan WY, about Browser Updates
If you set your homepage to the “About” page, it will automatically go out and pull the update each time you launch.
The only hitch is that you need to wait for the browser to finish checking for updates before you navigate from the page (it only takes a few moments). If you have a group of tabs you open, just set it as one of the group.
Tax Time Alert
The only legitimate debt forgiveness program with the IRS is the Offer in Compromise (OIC), which enables taxpayers to request a debt write-down. Taxpayers needing this service need to be wary of turning to ‘experts’ that charge money to submit the real OIC application. Best bet? Go directly to the IRS’s website and look up the OIC program. Brought to you by Scambusters.org.
Scambusters.org Reports Surge in Romance and Cryptocurrency Scams
Social media sites are rife with scams, but be especially aware of romance and cryptocurrency scams as they are on the rise. Crypto scam victims lose an average of $1,750 according to the National Consumers League and the FTC shows that romance scams have hit a record high with victims losing $547 million in 2021. Bottom line, don’t send money if you can’t meet the person and validate they are who they say they are.
FTC Alert Credit Repair
The FTC and the Department of Justice filed a lawsuit with Alex Miller Credit Repair, formerly known as Turbo Solutions Inc., saying they took people’s money without delivering on its promise to boost credit scores. The FTC would like to remind you that anything credit counselors do for you legally, you can do for yourself, but if you are considering hiring someone to help remember that reputable credit counselors don’t require you to pay in advance.
New Android Hijacking Malware Alert
Malware called Escobar Lives has been spotted hijacking Android cell phones to steal passwords. Escobar Lives installs via text message links. Brought to you by Scambusters.org.
MS-ISAC Patch Now Alert
The Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) has published a patch now (update your software) alert for Apache Struts, Google Chrome, Citrix SD-WAN, Microsoft, and Adobe products. If you use these products, make sure the software (or firmware) is updated.
Please report scams you may experience to firstname.lastname@example.org to alert your friends and neighbors.
Other ways to report a scam:
• Better Business Bureau Scam Tracker: www.bbb.org/scamtracker/us/reportscam
• File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at ftc.gov/complaint
• Report your scam to the FBI at https://www.ic3.gov/complaint
• Reported unwanted calls to the Federal Trade Commission’s Do Not Call Registration.
• Online at https://complaints.donotcall.gov/complaint/complaintcheck.aspx or call 1-888-382-1222, option 3
• Office of the Inspector General: www.oig.ssa.gov
The AARP Fraud Watch Network and Volunteers of America (VOA) created a new, free program to provide emotional support for people impacted by a scam or fraud, called ReST. Visit www.aarp.org/fraudsupport to learn more about the free program and register.