July 24, 2024

Do you believe that even celebrities may be duped? And they usually invest a lot to ensure financial safety. Nonetheless, Andy Cohen recently became the victim of a cunning credit card scam. He related his ordeal on The Today Show, explaining how his bank account was compromised through an impostor scam.

The Federal Trade Commission explains that impostor scams occur when fraudsters, pretending to be others like government or bank officials, dupe victims into divulging money or personal details. The FTC has identified impostor fraud as the most commonly reported scam for years. In 2023 alone, there were over 600,000 cases reported in the U.S., resulting in a loss of over $2 billion.

An Impersonator Scam Unraveled by Andy Cohen

During his appearance on The Today Show, Cohen explained that the whole ordeal began when he had misplaced his debit card. Shortly thereafter he received a fraud alert email, seemingly from his bank, which led to the scammers gaining access to his account once he clicked on the email link. Cohen became suspicious when the fraudsters requested him to sign into his Apple ID.

The next day, he received phone calls and texts that looked like they were from his bank, interrogating about his card usage. When he denied any suspicious usage, he was given “codes” which turned out to be bank wires from his account. He unwittingly enabled caller forwarding on his phone by following the instructions received, which helped the scammers reroute the phone calls meant for him.

Cohen discovered the problem when he visited his bank and saw that a hefty amount had been unauthorizedly transferred out of his account. However, Cohen chose not to disclose the exact amount lost during the show.

Even Renowned Personalities May Fall Prey to Scams

Back in 2020, Barbara Corcoran, founder of real estate brokerage firm Corcoran Group and a panelist on ABC’s Shark Tank, almost became a victim of a scam that could have cost her $400,000.

A CNBC report revealed that the fraudsters had cunningly fooled Corcoran’s bookkeeper by creating a fake email under her assistant’s name, seeking approval for an invoice related to a bogus investment property in Europe. Corcoran got to know about the fraud when her assistant was mailed by the bookkeeper regarding a wire transfer.

The criminals had created a counterfeit email seemingly from the assistant by just changing one letter in her name. Corcoran’s team was only able to unravel the scam when the real email of the assistant was included in the conversation regarding the transfer. Despite the scammers having transferred money from Corcoran’s account, she was able to retrieve the full amount because her bank had frozen the funds before they could reach the scammers in China.

Check out the FTC’s advice on how to safeguard against scammers, from romance scams and business scammers to government impersonators here.

Here are the 20 Most Commonly Leaked Passwords on the Dark Web – Change Yours Now!

Though your preferred password may seem easy to remember, its simplicity might make it insecure. A recent report by mobile security firm Lookout provided a list of 20 passwords most frequently found in leaked information on the dark web. As expected, many of the passwords are variations of “12345” or as simpe as “Iloveyou.” Choosing such passwords leaves you vulnerable to hacking.

Everyone prefers a memorable password. However, according to NordPass , the average individual uses over 100 different online accounts which require passwords. Remembering such an amount can prove to be difficult, but this is no reason to choose easy-to-hack passwords.

One solution is maintaining a traditional notebook that contains all your passwords safely stored away. When setting passwords, using a combination of numbers, letters and symbols provides best protection.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an Imposter Scam?

Imposter scam refers to a type of fraud where criminals deceive victims into giving out their money or personal information by pretending to be someone else, like government officials or bank employees.

How Can One Avoid Falling Victim to Scams?

To avoid scams, one must always verify the identity of the caller and be wary of unsolicited communication, be it calls, texts, or emails. Avoid clicking on suspicious links. Regularly monitoring bank accounts also helps in identifying any unusual activity.

How Can One Ensure the Strength of Their Password?

Strong and secure passwords typically contain a mix of numbers, letters, and symbols. They should ideally be unique for each account and regularly updated. Storing them securely, for instance in a notebook safely kept away, can help in managing them.

A little about the writer: Kayla is the midday host on Detroit’s 105.1 The Bounce. Beginning her radio career in 2016 as an intern at another Detroit station, Kayla’s journey through the ranks saw her work across stations in Knoxville, TN, Omaha, Ne and elsewhere before returning to Detroit. Kayla is a multifaceted personality having worn the hats of a promoter, web creator, social media producer and content generator.

A Michigan native, Kayla’s interests are eclectic. Ranging from camping and vacationing up north to downtown Detroit exploration and sports events attendance, she also enjoys movies, roller-skating, crafting, and music festivals. She shares her adventures across Michigan’s rich tapestry with her husband and together they travel.

Kayla’s hobbies include wine and beer tasting, crafting, hiking, roller skating, movies, home improvement projects, gardening, and festivals. She’s always seeking more local events in the community. She loves interacting with her community. Kayla’s writing spans lifestyle, pop culture, trending stories, hacks, and urban culture.