Wednesday, January 31, 2007


Videos and Scams

Jeez M. Crow, I can't belive it's been over two weeks since I've posted here. That's what happens when you actually do work when you're at work. Of course it could just be that I've been busy looking at other weird things on the net. One of the more bizarre things I've seen in a while just left me sitting there looking at the computer wondering if someone just slipped me some acid. This link will take you there.

On a totally unrelated topic...this past weekend at work something rather odd happened. I got a phone call early Saturday afternoon, and the call display showed some area code I was not familiar with. On the other end was a man with a very thick accent. He asked me if we carried 32" x 40" glass, and asked me the price. He then told me he needed 80 sheets, and wanted to know how soon he could get them. The connection was bad and we wound up getting cut off. In the meantime, I did some checking on the area code, and discovered he was calling from
Baltimore, MD. Why on earth was someone from Baltimore calling my little shop here in Canada for glass, let alone 80 sheets of it? When he called back, he gave me two Visa numbers and asked that I split the total between them. Why did this guy have two Visas? I asked when he planned to pick up the order, and he then informed me that he would be contacting a shipping company to pick up and deliver the glass to Africa where it was to be used to build a church. WHAT!? Baltimore to Canada to Africa. Okie doke. All sorts of alarms were going off about this. He wanted me to process the payment while he was on the phone, but I was feeling very uneasy about the whole thing. I thought I'd put him off for a bit, so I paused for a minute and told him that the first card wouldn't go through, and after another pause, I told him the other card wouldn't work either. He then gave me two more Visa numbers to try. What the hell!? How many cards did this guy have? I decided to process the cards, and sure enough they worked. He told me that when I e-mail him the authorization codes for the transaction he will contact the shipper and have them pick up the order. Something still smells of a scam of some sort, so I checked in with someone at my bank, but they weren't able to help. I called our bank card terminal people, again, no help. I called Visa, they gave me another number to verify the card, but the recording there keeps asking for the billing address for the card, which I don't have. So I have been trying to contact this guy by phone and e-mail. No luck yet.

The money is in our bank now, but before I order in 14 cases of glass that I'd rather not get stuck with I need to make sure this isn't as fishy as it smells. I'll keep you posted.


I got another call from the dude with all the credit cards, and he really didn't seem to want to provide too much information. I told him that the bank had contacted me and requested the name on the card and the billing address before they would clear the purchase. He finally agreed to e-mail me the info, and then he continued to phone me immediately afterward. I told him it might be a day before they get back to me.

I called the Visa confirmation line and entered the address and zip code he provided, and guess what? They didn't match. Go figure. So I decided to call in the police to look into this. I had a visit by a very nice young police officer who tried to make sense of the whole ordeal, and she was just as dumbstruck as I was. Baltimore...Seattle...Canada...Africa? After about an hour or so here, she headed back to the station to check in with the fraud unit and do some investigating. If the dude calls back, she has requested that I get from him his name, DOB, home address and phone. We'll see how it goes.

More to follow, I'm sure.

Update. February 1....

Got another call from the scammer again this morning. But not from the Baltimore phone number. Oh no...this one was a 760 area code. I did a number search and it came up from Carlsbad, CA. Called the cop shop and left word there for the investigating constable to give me a shout when she starts her shift this evening.

That's it for now...stay tuned kids.

What the f...? Listen dude, next time someone calls hoping to fix you into a little international church-glass menage et trois, just tell him, 'Sorry buddy I can't process you're credit card because these damn buttons on the Visa machine are too small and my hands are bananas.

LOL!! Those crazy-ass Germans. They're all bananas!
The banana thing had me mesmerized. Of course, so do blinking that's not saying much.

The credit card fraud is too exciting. But why glass for a church? That's just way weird.
I couldn't watch the whole Hands for Bananas or whatever the hell it was called video. It was just too darn strange.

And the Baltimore-Canada-Africa Church-Carlsbad, CA thing is all too weird. I'm glad you did the smart thing and called the police.
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