scam

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Wife to Presidents, 'Mom' to Ivanka, or Maybe Just a Con

Madame Giselle has some stories to tell

(Newser) - “I’d never met anybody like her in my life,” Bob Underwood says. He says his neighbor, known as Madame Giselle, claimed to be the former wife of Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez and current secret wife of Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sissi. She told him she was... More »

'Rotten Scam': NYC Food Fest Flops

State probe launched into the 'Fyre Festival' of pizza

(Newser) - Pizza lovers are blasting a Brooklyn food festival that apparently wasn't what it was sliced up to be. Fans who trekked to a "shady parking lot" for the New York City Pizza Festival on Saturday say they paid up to $75 for tickets, only to receive slices that... More »

Radio Host Faces 45 Years in Prison on Fraud Charges

Craig Carton allegedly scammed investors out of $5.6M to pay gambling debts

(Newser) - “I thought he called in sick this morning, but unfortunately my partner was arrested,” former NFL quarterback Boomer Esiason told listeners of WFAN's Boomer & Carton show Wednesday. The New York Daily News reports New York morning show host Craig Carton was arrested Wednesday and charged with... More »

'Legendary' Con Artist Accused of New Scam ... From Prison

Authorities say Jimmy Sabatino conned stores out of luxury goods over the phone

(Newser) - Prison appears to be doing nothing to change serial con man Jimmy Sabatino. The Miami Herald reports the "legendary" con artist pleaded guilty Friday to running a lucrative scam out of his cell at a federal facility in Florida. Authorities say Sabatino bought cellphones from corrections officers then used... More »

Taylor Swift's Ticketmaster Scheme Is a 'Scam'

Critics are calling it 'pay-to-play,' 'almost a Ponzi scheme'

(Newser) - Taylor Swift and Ticketmaster have teamed up to help ensure tickets to her upcoming tour go to her biggest fans, not scalpers. That's so nice, right? Wrong. The complicated process, which utilizes Ticketmaster's new Verified Fan service, asks fans to buy Swift merch or promote her music on... More »

Annie Lennox Has 'Potential' as Artist, per LA Radio Station

Singer posts weird letter she received telling her she has chance to be a star

(Newser) - What sweet dreams are really made of: receiving a letter from a radio station informing you that you might just have what it takes to become a big star. Of course, when the recipient of such a letter is ex-Eurythmics singer and four-time Grammy winner Annie Lennox, that kind of... More »

Bank CEOs Fooled by Notorious Email Prankster

No sensitive information was shared

(Newser) - Falling for a phishing scam is bad. Falling for a phishing scam when you're the CEO of a major bank, well, that's worse—and the unfortunate reality for Goldman Sachs' Lloyd Blankfein and Citigroup's Michael Corbat. The unsuspecting chief executives, along with Citigroup consumer-banking chief Stephen Bird,... More »

IRS Phone Scam's Mastermind Used American Accents

Man running bogus call centers busted, may have scammed Americans out of $300M

(Newser) - Indian police have nabbed the alleged mastermind behind an IRS scam that bilked Americans out of millions of dollars. Sagar "Shaggy" Thakkar, 24, was arrested in Mumbai on Saturday after a flight from Dubai, where he had been living since police raided nine call centers in October, CNNMoney reports.... More »

Unfamiliar Phone Number? You May Not Want to Answer

Better Business Bureau warns of new scam

(Newser) - If you get a phone call from an unfamiliar number and someone asks whether you can hear them, you may want to just hang up. The Better Business Bureau is warning people about the "Can You Hear Me?" scam, in which people are recorded answering "yes," WDTN... More »

The Biggest Self-Help Charlatan You Never Heard Of

Napoleon Hill wrote a best-selling book, but he also lived a life of 'countless scams'

(Newser) - Long before Deepak Chopra and Tony Robbins started preaching about how to be the best you possible, Napoleon Hill was peddling his own self-help mantras, penning 1937's Think and Grow Rich and inspiring not just cult-like behavior, but an actual cult. Matt Novak dives into Hill's jaw-dropping backstory... More »

Why People Spent $450K on a Ring That Doesn't Seem to Exist

Indiegogo campaign is shut down, with no BioRing in sight

(Newser) - A ring that seemed too good to be true is apparently too good to exist at all. So reports Vocativ in an exposé about a product that may have never been in the works—and the marketing teams and fundraisers who were seemingly duped by a shiny gadget. The object... More »

'Fake Love Scam' Costs 92-Year-Old His Life Savings

'I think she was stalking me'

(Newser) - Conning the elderly for financial gain is nothing new, but a scheme dubbed the "fake love scam" has officials on high alert. Authorities near Chicago say 92-year-old Aloysius Mack lost much of his life savings to a woman who first approached him at a McDonald's and eventually tricked... More »

He Was a Rich NFL Star. He Got Scammed in Silicon Valley

Inside the odd story of Eren Niazi, Patrick Willis, and Open Storage Solutions

(Newser) - Open Source Storage is a phoenix of sorts, reborn in 2013 from the ashes of the original Open Source Storage. It was founded by a twenty-something man named Eren Niazi in 2001 and ultimately bankrupted, but not before supposedly working with the likes of AOL, Sony, and the NSA. Niazi'... More »

He Wrote a Gibberish Paper via Autocomplete, Found Success

Looks like anyone can be a nuclear physicist

(Newser) - When New Zealand professor Christoph Bartneck received an invitation to submit a paper to the International Conference on Atomic and Nuclear Physics in the US, he was skeptical given he has "practically no knowledge" of nuclear physics. So he decided to use his iPhone's iOS autocomplete function to... More »

After 'Chinese Blessing' Turns Out to Be Scam, an Arrest

Attorney says accused was smuggled into US, her participation was forced

(Newser) - Back in July, police in New York announced they were looking for a group of female grifters involved in a "Chinese blessing scam" that has taken off in Brooklyn's Asian neighborhoods, reports Jezebel . The women were said to eavesdrop on conversations to figure out what problems a person... More »

As Wells Fargo Pays Up, Exec Exits With $125M

CEO says Carrie Tolstedt is 'a champion for customers'

(Newser) - Wells Fargo has been fined $185 million over a scam that involved employees opening phony accounts for customers who were forced to pay fees, but the executive in charge of those employees will take home almost as much. Carrie Tolstedt, former head of community banking, will receive $124.6 million... More »

Elderly Couple Says Grandson Scammed Them Out of Their Home

Hank and Helen Kawecki had lived in the home for 56 years

(Newser) - An elderly California couple is being kicked out of their home of 56 years after they say they were scammed by their grandson, Fox 11 reports. Hank and Helen Kawecki say they agreed to give the deed to their Thousand Oaks home to their grandson, Chad Moore, on the condition... More »

$65K Raised for Pearl Harbor Vet Scammed Out of Life Savings

Jack Holder says he has 1,000 thank you notes to write

(Newser) - Publishers Clearing House couldn't help Jack Holder. Bank of America said it couldn't help him, either. But nearly 1,000 regular people could, and did, donating more than $65,000 to a GoFundMe account after the 94-year-old Pearl Harbor survivor was scammed out of nearly all of his... More »

They Were Told It Was a Porn Audition. It Wasn't

Women say man created fake profile and tricked them into sex

(Newser) - The Stranger has a cautionary tale about an alleged scam to dupe young women into having sex. The newspaper reports that at least six women tell a similar story: They were solicited on Facebook by a person who called herself Deja Stwalley. She told them she was a recruiter for... More »

'CEO Email Scam' Is Surprisingly Successful

FBI has reports from every state

(Newser) - A relatively new email scam is raking in millions of dollars, and it's got nothing to do with long-lost relatives in Nigeria. Instead, as Quartz explains, the "CEO Email Scam" dupes employees into wiring money by using bogus messages from the boss. The scammers do their homework: They... More »

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