Monday, September 19, 2011

Flight Booking Scam

My friend is a traveler. She simply loves to go visit one place to another. She always books her flights by just calling a travel agency or booking online. She is comfortable with it. One day, she got a call from a telemarketer offering her a wonderful travel package. Since she was used to just purchasing travel packages, she carelessly jumped into the offer. She gave out her card details and was charged the fee for the supposed travel. She was told that the confirmation, online plane ticket, itinerary, and other travel details will be sent to her email. She said fine and drop the call. She went out to a friend's house and was not thinking of the email or whatever. She came home that night and checked her emails. No confirmation. She called the number the telemarketer gave her. A recorded voice message was what she got.She was still unsuspecting and thought that maybe, since it was at the wee hours of the night so maybe, there was no one there to get her call.

Morning came, she checked her email again. Still no confirmation. She's beginning to get a sick stomach. She called her bank and confirmed if a payment was charged to her credit card. Yes, there was. She tried calling the number again, this time, the recording says that the phone number does not exist. She tried to call the telephone company. The service assistant said the number was a prepaid number and that the company does not have any idea of who purchased that prepaid sim card.

To cut the story short, she was charged of nothing. And until now, she just can't believe it happened to her. She was smart and seems to be so careful and organized. She said the telemarketer sounds so very professional she did not get a hint that it was a scam. The whole call sounds so totally, genuinely professional that even a person who is experienced purchasing stuff legally online and via the phone was faked. She just can't believe it.

The moral of the story? Yes, phone scams really sound so real. I guess it is not enough to say that telemarketers are really so good at what they do.Yes, that is to scam you. Be really prepared. How prepared? I cannot really say. Nevertheless, better be equipped and keep your guards up however used you are to transacting purchases and businesses via phone or online. Always be careful.

Should you receive calls like this one, make sure that you get the number and address of the caller. You can do so by asking and/or by phone lookup reverse. can help you do this without hassle. It provides phone number lookup services as well as verifying phone numbers by providing details of the caller like name, address, and other important information. Gaining access to these details can help you should teh call be a scam. You can report the call and the caller's data to FTC and the police. These agencies can help you in dealing with such crimes.

Such event can also be a valuable means of helping spread the word about telephone scams and helping other people not become victimized in the future. At least, being able to share your story might give information to others, thereby making them aware such crimes exist and can be prevented if only more people are warned and advised what is best to do and how to keep their guards up.

My friend learned her lesson. I did, too, from her story. I hope more people will pick up the lesson and be more careful. And yes, ultimately, I hope the information will spread faster than the scam. Soon.

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