Scam/Theft;Bank Account Frozen Again

Before I talk about the topic of scams and thefts, listen to this song first. Well, actually, it’s for my own listening pleasure, and has nothing to do with today’s topic.       (^_^)

 

That one is one fantastic song by Bonnie Raitte, released in 1995. The title is “Something To Talk About”

 

Well, here’s something I like to talk about. …. scams and theft. We have been victimized three times in 3 years, one each year, which sets me thinking, are we just one unlucky family? ( ~o^)

First case:  Mom was at the frontyard cleaning up when she saw a police officer knocking on our neighbor’s door. Mom being nosy and all that, she told the cop there was no one there, and ” is there a problem, officer?” , so the cop approached her and informed mom there was a series of thefts in the neighborhood. Meanwhile I was in the house when I got a call from a sheriff, so I called mom, who at that moment, was still having a conversation with the cop. The sheriff on the phone said they caught a man in the act of stealing mails from mailboxes, and in his possession was my parents’ checkbook. Minutes after, we got a call from the bank informing us they had frozen my parents’ bank account.Apparently, the sheriff called the bank first.

Second case: We have another house we are renting out. The tenants moved  out, so we had it listed on Craigslist as house for rent. Craigslist is worldwide so we weren’t surprised when we received enquiries from Canada, England, and South Africa. The most promising was the one from England. The person was so interested that he actually offered to send us a deposit and 2 months advance payment before he even checked out the house.  Two days after, we received a manager’s check  from England in the amount of  $ 7,000. We were all surprised  because the person was extremely trusting and the amount was  $ 2,900 over the agreed first payment. So mom emailed the person and the person emailed back and told mom there was a mistake and could mom send back  the $ 2,900 overpayment as that was for his airfare to the US.  Mom was immediately suspicious and told the person she would first deposit his check and if  the check was ” good”, meaning, money was transferred to her account, then she’d send him the money. The person didn’t respond anymore, and one day after mom deposited the check, the bank informed us that our account had been frozen and would remain frozen, pending some investigation. Apparently, this scam had been going on everywhere, and majority of the victims were like us who were renting out houses. It was really a stupid scam, but surprisingly, quite a number  actually sent money to the scammer.

Third case: This is the most recent…. it happened Friday last week. Last October 17, mom put 6 mails in our mailbox, and all were bill payments, including that for American Express, my parents’ main credit card company. Then , last Friday, dad got a call from the bank , informing him that there was a man who was trying to encash a check issued by mom, in the amount of $ 1, 394.00, and according to the bank, it was for a roofing service. Dad said to hold it because there was no roofing service done. Mom was not home when the bank tried to contact her, so the bank told the man they wouldn’t encash it until they got approval from mom who signed the check. The teller got the check # and compared mom’s signature to the one on the check and deemed it authentic, just the same. Last Monday, mom went to the bank, and was surprised to learn that the amount the man was trying to encash was the exact amount on her American Express bill. She then inquired if  checks issued Oct. 17 had come in, and bank said nothing had come in yet. In other words, the mails were stolen from the mailbox, ( that is a federal offense), and the checks were ” washed “….. according to the bank people, that’s how these scammers erase or alter whatever is written on the check. In this case, American Express was changed to the man’s name, and our AE’s account number was changed to ” roofing service”. The bank immediately froze our account prior to changing our account number, and advised mom to immediately contact American Express since our credit card had also been compromised. With our American Express account number , name, address and phone number already known to the scammer, he could easily make online purchases. Thank goodness AE said no recent purchases were made, and they gave mom a new credit card number. …. Whew !  By the way, dad went to the police station to file a report but the good folks there said they couldn’t file any report until they got an ” incident ” report from the bank.  So mom’s going to the bank tomorrow to talk to the manager. The cop said they’d go to the bank to look at the videos.

< shakes head>  At least, we’ve learned one lesson. Don’t put any mails in the mailbox anymore. How troublesome.

Well, this is it for today. Peace !

 

 

7 responses to this post.

  1. Oh wow… that just…totally sucks. I’m so sorry that stuff like that keeps happening to you.

    I remember this time, back when I was living with my mom, when her bank got frozen because someone else (who was living in the same state as us) was talking money from my mom’s account. The bank noticed unusual amounts of transactions so they froze her account until they got a hold of her and figured out what was going on. Zomgz… that week was tough since there were seven of us… and the food was running low with no money to get a hold of. >.<

    Reply

    • Oh, my goodness ! Kyoki-chan ! ! How’s it going ?

      Yeah ! We’re an unlucky lot, aren’t we? Hahaha You know , mom is kinda afraid if the cops get to arrest the guy . The bank has a video of the guy when he was there, so there’s a possibilty the cops will get him. Problem is, he knows where we live, and who knows what he’ll do when he gets out of jail.

      Reply

      • Everything is going pretty well. How it is it going for you? 😀

        Awww, that bites that she is afraid. I think I would be scared too. But hopefully if he does get caught and punished he’ll learn not to do stuff like that and leave others alone.

        Reply

        • Ahhh, same-o, same-o. Life ‘s pretty much the same … just gotten older, I guess.

          Something happened again to our mails, this time to incoming mails, but I’ll just talk about it on my blog.

          I suggest you guys buy a mailbox with lock in it. The mailman has a universal key. Oh, yeah, clever thieves might have their own keys, but at least, we make it harder for them this time. Our mailboxes are just open sesames, I’m even surprised this kind of thing didn’t happen much earlier.

          Reply

          • Oh wow… you guys can’t get a break, can you? >.<

            You're allowed to put locks on your mail box? That is awesome. I'll have to see if I can do that.

            Reply

            • Argh.. I meant to type ‘I’ll have to see about putting one on soon.

              Stupid tired brain. >.<

            • My father hasn’t purchased the mailbox yet, but then we’re not sure anymore if the mailman actually has a universal key than can open locked mailboxes. So don’t put one yet. But yeah Home Depot is selling mailboxes that can be locked . Anyways, my mother went to the Postal Office to mail our mails. It’s troublesome. It may seem like a minor problem, but i think it has actually altered a way of life.

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