New mail scam hits Santa Monica
One resident, who wants to remain anonymous, said he opened a letter from – who he thought was AIG, one of the biggest insurance carriers in the world. Right away, the resident noticed something fishy. His first and last name were correct but his middle initial was replaced with the initial of his wife’s first name. Moreover, the mailing address was off by one digit.
The letter congratulated the resident and said his contract with AIG would mature on April 15, and he would soon be able to enjoy the benefits of the contract that was “issued some time ago.”
Hello – the resident doesn’t even have a contract with AIG or any of their subsidiaries. Can you say fraud?
The resident called the telephone number on the letter. The outgoing message asked for a policy number and a social security number to begin the log-in process.
The resident then decided to call the real AIG directly. Kai, one of the customer service representatives, said AIG was aware of the fraud outlined above but also mentioned people should be aware of another type of mail fraud.
In this case, recipients receive a letter from the fake AIG that includes a check. But before the check can be cashed, the recipient must complete a document and fax it back to the phony corporate office. The various types of information requested are: a signature, e-mail address, social security, EIN, annuity and profit sharing account numbers, bank account numbers, and spouses’ name.
Mail fraud is one of the oldest types of fraud. As a general rule, you should never supply your personal or financial information to any organization that should already have it. If you receive a letter from what you think is a reputable company but your information is misspelled, missing a digit, or just wrong – chances are someone is trying to scam you.