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Avoid Getting Conned, Scammed and Ripped Off

Before the end of this month, some scammers, some con man, is going to intersect with you in your life one way or another,” Dr. Phil says. “I want to talk about how to spot these things, what the red flags are, so you don’t become part of this multibillion-dollar industry.”

Laura McNeal, Tracy Siska, Steve Greenberg, and Exavier B. Pope join Dr. Phil on this week’s Phil in the Blanks podcast weigh in on this vital issue that is targeting children, adults, and bank accounts and share what you need to know to protect yourself.


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  • "You don't expect psychopaths to be remorseful.” Dr. Phil

  • “They're sophisticated scams!” Tracy Siska, Executive Director, The Chicago Justice Project

  • “Then the other category is the narcissist that thinks the law just doesn't apply to them.” Dr. Phil

  • “They think they [scammers] are invincible!” Dr. Laura McNeal, Professor and Legal Analyst

  • “We are rewarding people who are scamming and saying, 'Hey, you'll get your own documentary too! Exavier Pope, Attorney and Legal Analyst

  • "People should be prosecuted because unfortunately, that's the way that you keep order in society. Otherwise there's just a complete lack of respect." Steve Greenberg, Attorney


Report to help fight fraud!

Protect your community by reporting fraud, scams, and bad business practices. REPORT FRAUD TO THE FTC HERE NOW

Guide to Protecting Young Online Gamers: Fortnite Scams and More

Source: Tulane University School of Professional Advancement Click here for the full article

  • One of the most common in-game currencies is Fortnite’s “V-bucks.”

  • Since V-bucks are a highly sought out commodity by players, scammers will often lure unsuspecting minors into compromising their information and security in exchange for V-bucks.

Here are some common scams targeting Teens and Young Adults to be on the lookout for to avoid becoming a victim.

  • Knock-offs: Scammers create online ads and online stores supposedly selling cheap designer goods, electronic gadgets and other luxury items.

  • Fake Scholarship Offers: With the rising cost of college to pay for, scammers use fake scholarship and financial aid offers to steal personal information from students.

  • Make Money Fast: Cyber criminals promise non-existent jobs and get rich quick schemes. Contests: Aspiring young artists and writers are lured to arts and literature contests.

  • Acting & Modeling Scams: “A Talent Scout” is looking for America’s Next…fill-in-the blank.

  • Employment & Training Scams: Enterprising Teens and Young Adults can find it difficult to find seasonal work, so online scammers offer jobs where they can work from home online.

  • Online Auctions: There are at least two versions. First, after bidding on and winning an online auction, you find out the item doesn’t exist or never arrives. Or, the unsuspecting Teen or Young Adult sells their items online. The buyer says the payment is on the way and urges them to ship the item right away, but the payment never arrives.

  • To Good To Be True: Inexperience and online habits makes them highly susceptible to online and social media scams. Here are some tips to avoid becoming a victim:

  • If it looks to good to be true, it likely is. Stay away.

  • Look for online stores and auction sites with good reviews and ratings from real people

  • Walk away from a contest, job or scholarship offers that require you to pay upfront

  • Never give out your personal information unless you are confident you can trust the person or company you are interacting with.

Top 7 scam predictions for 2022








  • Sim Swapping is a new sneaky way to get around your two-step authentication for mobile banking.

  • “They call your mobile phone carrier, they pretend they are you and they get your phone number shifted to their phone, and so in this way they are not only able to steal your password but have the phone to defeat dual factor authentication.

Scams Targeting Veterans

Plano Veteran Loses $220k in Crypto Scam

Top 10 Scams Targeting Seniors

1. Government impostor scams: Government impostors call unsuspecting victims and pretend to be from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Social Security Administration, or Medicare.

2. The grandparent scam: Scammers will place a call to an older person and say something along the lines of: “Hi Grandma, do you know who this is?” When the unsuspecting grandparent guesses the name of the grandchild the scammer most sounds like, the scammer has established a fake identity without having done any background research.

3. Medicare/health insurance scams: Every U.S. citizen or permanent resident over age 65 qualifies for Medicare, so there is rarely any need for a scam artist to research what private health insurance company older people have in order to scam them out of some money.

4. Computer tech support scams: Computer technical support scams prey on people’s lack of knowledge about computers and cybersecurity.

5. Sweepstakes & lottery scams: Here, scammers inform their mark that they have won a lottery or sweepstakes of some kind and need to make some sort of payment to unlock the supposed prize.

6. Robocalls/phone scams: Robocallers use a variety of tactics to cheat their victims. Some may claim that a warranty is expiring on their car/electronic product and payment is needed to renew it.

7. Romance scams: Romance scammers create elaborate fake profiles, often on social media, and exploit seniors’ loneliness for money. In some cases, romance scammers may (or pretend to) be overseas, and request money to pay for visas, medical emergencies, and travel expenses to come visit the U.S.

8. Internet and email fraud: Pop-up browser windows simulating virus-scanning software will fool victims into either downloading a fake anti-virus program (at a substantial cost) or an actual virus that will open up whatever information is on the user’s computer to scammers.

9. Elder financial abuse: Unlike many of the other scams, elder financial abuse is carried out by someone a senior knows. This can be a family member, friend, power of attorney, or caregiver. These trusted individuals try and gain control of a senior’s money, assets, and credit.

10. Charity scams: Some scammers may use a name similar to a legitimate charity. They often capitalize on current events, such as natural disasters, and may set up a fundraising page on a crowdsourcing site, which don’t always have to means to investigate fraud.

Senior speaks out after falling prey to ‘evil’ fraudster in grocery store lot

Source: Winnepeg Free Press Click here for the full article

Winnipegger Gene Kirichenko, who lost $600 to the fraudsters, said he only believed the bogus tale spun by a man and a woman because children were with them.

Reporting a fraud and scam

If you’re a victim of a scam, you can report it to the authorities by:

  • Submitting a complaint online with the Federal Trade Commission

  • Contacting your local police or sheriff's office

  • Reporting it to your state attorney general

Resource Materials

The National APS Resource Center’s partner, the Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement (WISER), has created eight fact sheets with a wealth of information on senior financial exploitation. Two are general in nature, providing an overview of financial abuse and describing the most common types of scams and frauds. The other six each describe a specific form of financial exploitation in detail, with information about how the abuse occurs, what to do when it is discovered, and what resources are available to address it. These can be used by APS when investigating a case involving, for example, power of attorney abuse, and can also be used as educational materials for the general public or other professionals.

Visit the links below to view each of these fact sheets.


Do Yourself a Favor: Be Crime Smart.

Getting educated and taking a few basic steps may well keep you from becoming a victim of crime and fraud—and save you a great deal of time and trouble. You can also help us protect your families and communities by reporting suspicious activities and helping find wanted fugitives and missing kids.

How to Report Crime & Fraud

Get Connected & Let Dr. Phil Know What You Thought About The Episode:




Podcast Page: DrPhilintheBlanks



Executive Director Chicago Justice Project

Twitter: @TracySiska @CJPJustProj

FB: @ChicagoJusticeProject


Professor & Legal Analyst

Lecturer Columbia University UofL Law Professor IG: @drlauramcneal

Twitter: @lauramcneal

Facebook: @drlauramcneal



Greenberg Trial Lawyers

IG: @sgcrimlaw

Twitter: @SGcrimlaw

FB: Greenberg Trial Lawyers



The Pope Law Firm, P.C. IG: @exavierpope

FB: ExavierPope Twitter: @ExavierPope

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