Scammers Impersonating Best Buy’s Geek Squad Targeting Minnesota + Wisconsin
It seems every week there is a scam alert to be aware of. Some are brand-new scams, while others are scams that have been around for a while but for whatever reason seem to become more predominant at certain points in time.
Recently, one such scam targeted my wife, and at first glance, it looked like a legitimate invoice. She forwarded me an email claiming to be from Best Buy's Geek Squad saying that we them money and she wanted to know if this was something we needed to pay.
My initial thought was that there was no way we owed Best Buy any money. I do shop frequently at Best Buy and I use their Rewards Program and Total Tech services, but in my mind, I was all paid up for the year and hadn't been there in months.
Once I looked closer at the email, I knew we were being targeted by scammers. The email tried to look official with the Geek Squad logo, an order date, payment method, and a charge of $489.99.
However, the payment method listed was "Plastic Cad". I'm not sure they meant to type "card", so that typo screams scam. Also, they didn't bother to list the type of card, with the last 4 digits of that card, which would have been more professional.
The sloppiness of this scam attempt became even more apparent when I read their message. It went on to say:
Your subscription with GEEK SQUAD will renew today and $489.99 is about to be debited from your account by today. The debited amount will be reflected within the next 24hrs. In case of any further clarification or block the auto-renewal service please reach out to our, Customer Help Center:
Then there was a phone number I could call to dispute the charges. I'm sure you spot the clunky grammar used along with things like "24hrs" and a misplaced comma before "Customer Help Center". Not only that, they didn't even use my name in the greeting.
It's obviously a scam, but this scam has been around before and if it's still out there, that must mean some people are falling for it. A quick search online exposed this scam and the way they want it to play out is for people to call that number and then the scammer would try to convince the victim to provide personal information, such as payment information.
According to GoBankingRates.com, this is one of several scams involving impersonating the Geek Squad. They all have the same goal of getting people to provide personal information one way or another.
The bottom line is you should never provide your personal information to anyone, especially when it seems you're being pressured. If you ever think it might be legitimate, never call the number they provided for you. Instead, call the company in question directly with their publicly listed number, or even stop by the business in person.
Another thing to do is a quick search online. That's what I did and quickly discovered this was a scam and the email I received looked just like what other scam targets had also received.
Scammers will cast a wide net and wait to hear from the people who fall for it, who are often the most vulnerable. Hopefully, by sharing this type of information, we can all help each other avoid being taken advantage of.
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Gallery Credit: Rachel Cavanaugh