PlayStation scam makes FBI warning list

Warnings have been posted online about auction site phishing scams, particularly the PlayStation scam, according to the FBI.

Sony PlayStation users are being warned by the FBI about scams targeting them and other online consumers.

The Sony PlayStation fraud involves an unsolicited email, according to the FBI's Internet Crime Complaint Center, or IC3.

In the missive, a target is informed that an ad for their "Sony PlayStation 3 Metal Gear Solid 4 PS3 80 GB" has been posted at an online auction site and they're given a "confirmation number" for the posting. Apparently, the scammers are hoping the recipient of the message will try to cancel the ad -- either because they don't want to sell their PlayStation system or they don't have such a system to sell -- and use the attempted cancellation to pry sensitive information from the victim or to infect their computer with malware.

Warnings have been posted online to beware of auction site phishing email scams in general and the PlayStation scam specifically, the IC3 said.

PlayStation owners are no strangers to scams, especially since hackers compromised the PlayStation Network earlier this year.

Another prominent swindle currently targeting online consumers involves mortgage seekers and mortgage holders.

That scam involves a letter purportedly from a California law firm soliciting persons to join a legal action against mortgage companies in the state, explained an IC3 alert released Friday. To participate in the "Mass Joinder Litigation," consumers were asked to pay a nonrefundable upfront fee ranging from $2000 to $5000.

"The law firm made a wide variety of claims and sales pitches and offered legal and litigation services, with the goal of taking money from the victim," the IC3 noted.

The letter claims to be from a law firm called Kramer & Kaslow. While that firm is a real one and it is involved in such a lawsuit, the firm disavows any connection to the letter that's been making the online rounds for months. In a statement issued to homeowner advocate Martin Andelman, Philip Kramer declared: "The mailer was NOT approved by me. I did NOT authorize the mailer. I would NOT have authorized the mailer if I had been asked in advance."

Kramer went on to claim that another law firm was behind the scam letter. "I'm not opposed to representing a large number of clients in my mass joinder cases," he explained. "In fact, that is the idea of delivering economy of scale to clients and being able to properly litigate against banks."

"However," he continued, "I am opposed to careless and aggressive marketing campaigns, and I never was asked, nor did I approve, that law firm to market under my name, and/or to pose as my law firm when speaking with prospective clients."

In its scam alert, the IC3 explained that lawyers seeking plaintiffs to join a class for a class action lawsuit do not seek up front commissions from their class clients. Class action lawyers are typically paid on a contingency basis, whereby they receive a portion of whatever money their clients are awarded.

Follow freelance technology writer John P. Mello Jr. and Today@PCWorld on Twitter.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags hackerscybercrimelegalplaystationsonyscamsgamesConsumer Advicegame consolesscams and hoaxesgamepads

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John P. Mello Jr.

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?