Scams 2

we are very aware that the more we write about scams, the worse it seems, so, a few more words of advice:

  • don’t panic – it’s very unlikely it’s personal, they have probably sent the same scam to millions of people
  • if it’s vague, imprecise etc, it’s wrong.
  • if you panic, you will say or do something that may make the situation worse. It’s what they want you to do.
  • if it seems to be from a company you do use, eg Amazon (sorry Amazon) saying eg your account has been charged tonnes of money, don’t follow any link, don’t reply or ring any number, first just look at your account on-line and see what state it’s in. If all looks fine, change your password and forget it (or maybe report it).
  • be aware that there are companies who sell on your information to others to mis-use, so quoting something basic to you like a first name or postcode is no proof it’s not a scam.


Christmas is nearly here, and everyone is full of peace and joy. Oh well, maybe not.

One thing for sure is that the scams are on the increase. There are many people out there who give advice on how not to get caught, but we still see news everyday on the BBC and elsewhere of people being relieved of thousands of their pounds.

We like Atomic Shrimp, and commend you to his site on YouTube. Here is a really good recent video about what to look out for in e-mails:

We wanted to say a few words too.

Scams can take many forms, not just e-mails. We get scam phone calls, text messages and even printed snail mail. One of the reasons we left all social media was the scams (and the advertising). We set up accounts on Whatsapp the other day, told no-one and yet we’re still getting daily spam and scams. It’s non-stop.

We suggest that you start with the assumpton that anything you get is spam or a scam, and then ask yourself questions about it. If you still are not 100% certain at the end that it’s genuine, then forget it.

If it is a genuine communication from eg your bank, and you ignore it, then they will try again. They will understand. If it’s not something you were expecting, or might reasonably expect, be suspicious.

I get many scams ‘from’ Sky, Amazon Prime, NatWest bank and more. I know they are scams because I use none of these companies. Of course, they are not from those genuine companies at all. And no, I have never won a lottery, no-one has millions to send to me. These scammers rely on your greed. If it sounds too good to be true, it is.

If my bank wants to send me something, they warn me beforehand with a message to my phone. It helps. Others do the same.


I was amused the other day by the news that the Twitter accounts for many famous and solvent people had been hacked:

The scam was: send us some Bitcoin money and we will double it and send it back. Except, of course, they wouldn’t.

Why was I amused?

Here are some people who had accounts affected: Joe Biden, Barack Obama, Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, Bill Gates…

But who is the most famous user of Twitter in the world? Donald Trump.

Was his account attacked? No. Why not?

Because no-one would ever believe he would generously send anyone free money. Ever.


I am deliberately not writing about the big topics of the day: Trump, Johnson, racism, police brutality, Dominic Cummings, Brexit and the virus. They are important topics, of course, but we need a break from these, and I have nothing to add that has not been said and better by others.

However, rather sadly, there are people, always, wanting to exploit any situation to relieve you of your money, and the virus gives a great opportunity. It also gives extra exposure to the conspiracy theorists and the flat earthers.


It’s very sad, though not surprising, that people are trying to take extra advantage of the virus lockdown with scams etc.

I am usually careful. The scam e-mail does not get opened. There was an attempt to fraudulently use my credit card details, but my bank blocked that.

I ordered a hard disk drive at nearly £200 through Amazon, not from them but from a marketplace seller. He (or maybe she) sent me a huge box with a piece of tat in. Seeing the reviews, in the past few days, plenty of others have been victims of the same scam.

Amazon are usually very good in dealing with these problems, and it is not their fault at all, but it is annoying. Don’t believe the good reviews – they could easily be fake.