Scams

News & Analysis as of

IRS Scrutinizes Captive Insurance

Every year the IRS issues a list of tax scams pertinent to that filing season. This list is commonly referred to as the (“Dirty Dozen”). The Dirty Dozen warns taxpayers of illegal tax avoidance schemes that can lead to...more

Repeated IRS Warnings Haven’t Stopped Telephone Scams

In October 2013, the IRS issued taxpayers a warning about a pervasive telephone scam designed to solicit payments and release of personal information from individuals. The IRS issued a second warning concerning the scam near...more

No it is not the IRS calling. Phone scammers pretending to be the IRS

Phone scams have become a persistent and pervasive problem for many taxpayers. Scammers are able to alter caller ID numbers to make it look like the IRS is calling. ...more

Immigration Corner: Scams Abound, Getting Acquainted with the Business Visitor, and CBP Eases Your Next U.S. Entry

New Initiatives = New Targets for Scams - Unfortunately, where there is uncertainty, there are those who will use scams to target those individuals looking for clarity. On November 20, 2014, the President announced a...more

Telephone Calls from the IRS

In the last week, I have received two messages on my answering machine at home purporting to be from the IRS, advising me that I owe taxes and if I don’t call them back I may be arrested. I’ve also gotten calls from other...more

Advertising Law - November 2014 #3

NAD Sniffs at Odor Protection Claims - Concerned that a 48 hour antiperspirant/deodorant constitutes an overstated claim of “100% odor protection,” the National Advertising Division recommended...more

Beware of IP Scams-Invention Development

Information about patent and trademark applications, processes and maintenance requirements is much more accessible to the public than it used to be. In particular, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has...more

Fraudsters Rising: IRS Impersonators Flooding the Phone Lines

There seems to be an uptick in phone calls from people claiming to be from the Internal Revenue Service, telling potential victims they owe back taxes and demanding immediate payment. They threaten lawsuits (or worse) unless...more

Advertising Law - October 2014 #3

Permanent Ban From Prize Promotion Business After Sweepstakes Scam - A sweepstakes operator agreed to a permanent ban from the prize promotion business pursuant to a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission after...more

Beware of Tax Phishing Scams

We have recently become aware (again) of fake emails purporting to emanate from the CRA and informing the recipient that he/she has received an Interac email money transfer (i.e., a surprise refund). Generally, the...more

SEC Obtains Asset Freeze of Turks and Caicos Company Conducting Ponzi Scheme

The Securities and Exchange Commission has obtained an emergency asset freeze of a Turks and Caicos company that allegedly ran a Ponzi scheme in Florida. According to the SEC’s complaint, between November 2004 and May 2014,...more

Beware of Scam Targeting H-1B Applicants

Visa applicants are often the subject of scams and other fraudulent activity and the immigration lawyers at Shapiro Law Group have become aware of a new scam targeting H1-B visa applicants that arose over the summer....more

Protecting the bank’s position when customers fall hook, (on)line and sinker for vishing frauds

As fraud continues to cost the UK economy billions each year, bank customers are now looking to the banks to cover their losses. What steps should banks take to defend themselves against such claims? Online banking...more

Alert – New Scam Targets Indian H-1b Applicants

Beware of a new scam, experienced by our clients and confirmed to have occurred by the American Immigration Lawyers Association to employees of other Indian companies. Callers, posing as officers of U.S. Citizenship and...more

August Scam-of-the-Month Award

It turns out that back in 2011 the hospital sold the right to use its hospital billing codes to free-standing clinics. So under the arrangement, when the clinics sent bills, they were hospital bills rather than clinic bills...more

CFPB settles with military base retailer for alleged fee scam; Senators seek CFPB investigation of retailer’s debt collection...

The CFPB has announced a settlement with USA Discounters, a retailer that operates a chain of stores near military bases and offers financing for purchases through retail installment sales contracts (RICs), to resolve charges...more

Reviewing Potential Investments With Your Clients

On August 4, 2014, the SEC issued an Investor Alert citing 10 Red Flags that should give investors an indication that an unregistered offering may be a scam. If you are considering an investment in an unregistered offering...more

Information Security Training Can Even Save Your Grandparents

My morning routine includes driving to work and listening to The Bert Show, which, if you’re not familiar. is a morning talk show that covers celebrity gossip, local news, and even real life problems such as cheating...more

Phone Scam Targets Immigrants

Around this time last year, we reported on telephone scams involving callers purporting to be immigration officers contacting foreign nationals to demand money. Recently, there have been reports of a similar scam targeting...more

Spear Phishing Scams Targeting Corporate Executives

The FBI has seen an increase in sophisticated “spear phishing” scams targeting executives across industry sectors. Spear phishing is when a criminal sends an e-mail that appears to be from a trusted source to a specific...more

Markit to Market - May 2014

In This Issue: - Scammers Still Be...Scamming - Contests – Check Rules Before Offering! - Catalogs as Specimens - gTLD Sunrise Periods Now Open - Excerpt from Scammers Still Be...Scamming: Based...more

Scammers Still Be Scamming

Based on the volume of scam letters and email sent to us by our clients, trademark and domain name scams continue unabated in 2014. In fact, if anything, these scams have increased in volume and creativity. Remember to look...more

Watch Out! Telephone Scams Targeting Foreign Nationals on the Rise

In recent weeks there has been an increase in telephone scams that are designed to fraudulently elicit money and personal information from foreign nationals. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has warned...more

IRS Issues Warnings about Email and Telephone Tax Scams

As the 2014 tax filing season progresses the Internal Revenue Service has issued warnings to taxpayers about convincing fraudulent email messages and telephone calls seeking payments or personal information that will enable...more

Outrageous Scams in Financing: Not So Unusual After All

When fundraising, remember—everyone is trying to cheat you. Well, that’s not really true, but it’s obvious that we’d all be skeptical if a foreign “prince” is offering a start-up company several million dollars with...more

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