Scams don't sleep. Here's how to put this one to rest.
Scams can happen to anyone, including us. Here is an example of a criminal that is using our company information for malicious motives: Our identity is being used as part of a phishing scam. We don’t know who is behind this scam, nor did we give them permission to use our information. Here’s what we do know – this is an international group sending realistic fraudulent checks for thousands of dollars to businesses, and signing them “from” Pen Publishing Interactive, Inc. If you think you may have received fraudulent documents from us, read on.
From the innocent party’s point of view, you receive an envelope in the mail with a professional looking check addressed to your business for a suspiciously high amount of money. The envelope also includes a letter instructing you to deposit the check, and to notify Larry.Horna@dr.com once you’ve done so.
Do not deposit this check, do not transfer any money, and report this act of fraud to the appropriate authorities.
Here are some tips on determining if a check is legitimate or not –
- Call the company to confirm that they truly exist. Ask for the person who (allegedly) sent the correspondence.
- Ask yourself: Are you expecting money from an international bank? If not, it’s probably a scam.
- If you’re not expecting a check for a considerably large or unusual amount, be skeptical.
And the Golden Rule: Always, always check with the sender if you’re not expecting any sort of message (email) or content (money) from them. Phishing (attempting to acquire information for malicious purposes) comes in many forms, impacts thousands of businesses daily, and will not go away anytime soon. As web professionals we see it every day. Don’t let the bad guys win; skepticism can sometimes keep you safe.