Commentary

MILAM COUNTY T.R.I.A.D.

90# ‘scam warning’ is a scam itself, sort of
Ted Hubert

Have you heard about the scammers calling victims and asking them to key in 9-0-# (pound key)?

An innocent person, usually an elderly man or woman, will receive a call. The caller will have some scheme to trick the person on the other end of the line, to participate in an upgrade program.

The one called is convinced that it is a service and complies. Unknowingly the scammer has just received control over the telephone.

Any call made will be billed to the victim. Hundreds of dollars in telephone calls show up on the next month’s telephone bill. You gave the thief permission to use your phone line when you punched in the requested data. So pay the bill. The “victim” writes: “I received a telephone call from an individual identifying himself as an AT&T Service Technician (could also be Telus) who was conducting a test on the telephone lines.

“To complete the test I should touch nine, zero the pound sign (#) and hang up. Luckily I was suspicious and refused.

“Upon contacting the telephone company, I was informed that by pushing 90# you gave the requesting individual full access to your telephone line, which enables them to place long distance calls billed to your home phone number.”

This story was checked through www.snopes.com and www.truthorfiction.com.

Snopes did their homework. The e-mail is a mix of fact and fiction.

Can you punch in 90# which gives access to your home phone?

No, This only works for telephones using th (PBX) system. People using landlines or cell phones are unable to give away telephone’s security by using 9-0-#.

If the writer said he got a telephone call last evening. This would mean the was working for the government, hospitals, or a business which uses the PBX.

It case the reader is not properly impressed, the writer reported his confirmation with Verizon.

The last plea asks you to forward the warning to everyone you know. He wants you to think the sky is falling.

The claim is that this scam was started by prisoners. Snopes.com tells us the scam was first noticed in 1998. The media would report such a dangerous crime.

The very worst place to get reliable news is through your email account.

Protect yourself and your family but keep your wits about you. Think these things through and act accordingly. The sky is not falling. Do not holler wolf unless you see one.

Milam County TRIAD is holding its General Membership Meeting on October 10th in Rockdale. The speaker is Cameron Chief of Police, Randy Dixon.

ted@myalpha1.net


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2013-08-29 digital edition



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