Unfortunately, both online and offline, fraud is a terrible part of conducting business. The worldwide and somewhat anonymous character of online business, on the other hand, makes fraudulent conduct (especially that originating from outside the country) more easier to perpetrate.
The following sections outline the many sorts of fraud that GreggHost encounters on a daily basis, as well as what may be done to assist prevent it.
If you believe a GreggHost client is participating in fraudulent conduct, you may skip the section below about reporting fraudulent activity to GreggHost.
Types of fraudulent activity
On a regular basis, GreggHost comes across numerous sorts of fraudulent activities. Here are a few of the most frequent types.
Sign-ups that are fraudulent
This happens when someone signs up for a GreggHost account using fraudulent information and (typically) a stolen credit card. While GreggHost has a lot of safeguards in place to prevent this, it is possible that some will get through. GreggHost generally discovers them later—they frequently participate in various sorts of theft while on GreggHost servers—but it is sometimes only discovered when the genuine owner of the stolen credit card used to sign up contacts GreggHost.
When a customer creates a false web site (typically a bank, an eBay/Paypal login page, and so on) in order to trick individuals into entering sensitive information into a web-based form, this is known as phishing. A login name and password, as well as a credit card number, are examples of such information. The perpetrator then collects these for his or her own purposes. Typically, victims are routed to the site via spam email purporting to be from a bank, eBay, or other reputable organization.
Some of these phishing sites and emails appear to be legitimate. As a result, you should never click on a link in an email that claims to be from a bank or a transactional site like eBay, no matter how convincing it appears to be. If you inquire, such institutions will give you the same advise. Instead, go directly to a website by putting its whole URL into your browser.
This is a type of scam in which crooks send enormous amounts of spam to hype a company (usually a penny stock), generally touting a “breakthrough” or forthcoming product announcement. The email encourages recipients to acquire the shares in order to profit. The underlying goal of the scheme is to artificially raise the stock’s value after the criminal has purchased it at a lesser price in order to sell it for a profit. Those that acquired the stock at the criminal’s direction end up with an overvalued stock that quickly depreciates in value.
Scams involving advance payments
Advance fee scams come in a variety of forms. A few of the more prevalent kinds are listed here.
The 419 scam takes its name from the Nigerian criminal code, which this sort of fraud is in violation of (Nigeria is where the scam originated and is often practiced).
The victim receives an email from someone (usually a famous figure from an African country) asking them to assist with the transfer of a big sum of money out of the country. The victim is promised a portion of the money transmitted in exchange for their assistance. The victim is eventually asked to transfer the criminal a particular amount of money to accomplish the deal, after which the criminal disappears. Variations on this theme include the victim inheriting a big sum of money, winning a lottery (with a hefty “administration charge”), and so on.
Scams involving escrow and shipment
Escrow and shipment scams are a popular version of the above-mentioned advance fee 419 scam.
In these frauds, the criminal advertises a high-value item (such as a motorcycle, laptop, or television) on eBay for an exceptionally cheap price. When potential purchasers place a bid, they are requested to pay through an escrow service chosen by the seller in order to reduce the transaction’s cost (robbing eBay of a cut in the process, with the victim’s greed taking precedence).
This escrow service, of course, does not exist and is instead a phony website constructed by the thief. The buyer is instructed to wire their payment to the fictitious escrow service, following which neither the escrow service nor the seller is contacted again. A variation of this operates in the same way, but instead of creating a false shipping company website, the criminal produces a phony shipping company website.
Scams involving fake storefronts
Another popular form of the advance fee 419 scam involves the criminal creating a bogus storefront with extremely low-cost goods for sale. The customer is told to submit their payment to the criminal, which is usually done via wire. The seller is never heard from again after the payment is sent, and the site is taken down.
The employment scam is another prevalent sort of advance fee 419 fraud. It works like this: the victim receives an email from a company or employment service expressing interest in hiring them. If the victim shows any interest, the criminal will ask them to wire some sort of administrative charge. The so-called employer is never heard from again after the monies are sent.
GreggHost maintains the right, with or without notice, to cancel any account found to be engaging in fraudulent activities.
Reporting fraudulent activity to GreggHost
If you suspect that a GreggHost account is being used for fraudulent purposes, please contact GreggHost and inform an abuse support representative. Please include as much information as possible.
If the fraudulent behavior was conducted by email, please supply the whole headers and content of the communication.
If your credit card was used fraudulently to sign up for a GreggHost account, please supply the card’s first two and last four digits, as well as the card’s name, date, and transaction amount.
Is there a place where I can file a fraud complaint?
GreggHost can be reached at the following email address: