The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is sending another round of checks to victims of an illegal credit card billing scam perpetrated by J.K. Publications.  The FTC first took action against J. K. Publications, Inc in 1998.  J.K. Publications  purchased access to the credit card account numbers of more than three million Visa and MasterCard holders from a California bank purportedly to confirm that the customers had valid credit cards and debit cards.  Instead, they made illegal charges on the cards for X-rated Websites.  Some of the people who had these charges put on their bills didn’t even own computers at that time.  The charges appeared under the names “Netfill,” “N-Bill,” “MJD ServiceCorp,” and “Webtel.”  The FTC managed to quickly shut down the scam, but J.K. Publications and the people involved in the scam managed to hide millions of the fraudulently obtained dollars in off-shore banks.  Fortunately, over time the FTC has been successful in getting the money back and is now mailing out  additional checks to the victims of the scam.

If you were a victim of this scam, you may be eligible for a refund. For more information about this refund program, click on the FTC Scam Refunds tab in the middle of the first page of http://www.scamicide.com. There are no fees involved with receiving a refund through this program. Anyone contacting you about this refund program who demands a fee or payment of any kind is a scammer.

TIPS

An important lesson for us all from this scam is the importance of regularly reviewing your credit card or debit card statements in detail each month in order to identify if there are any charges on your account that should not be there.  Scammers will often manage to gain access to their victims’ credit card accounts, bank accounts tied to a debit card or phone bill and make small monthly charges that some people may overlook because the charge is so small.  However, over time those charges add up and you can end up losing a lot of money to scams like this if you are not careful.  If you do find charges that you did not make on your credit card account, you should contact your credit card company immediately to have the charges removed.

For those of you receiving the Scam of the day through an email, I just want to remind you that if you want to see the ever increasing list of Coronavirus scams go to the first page of the http://www.scamicide.com website and click on the tab at the top of the page that indicates “Coronavirus Scams.”  Scamicide has been cited by the New York Times as one of three top sources for information about Coronavirus related scams.

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