[SI-LIST] : FW: RE: Area code 809

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From: Charbonneau, Richard A ([email protected])
Date: Fri Nov 03 2000 - 08:43:17 PST

I have not checked this out personally, but decided to forward it to all of
you just in case. This sounds like a serious problem.


richard charbonneau

> Subject: Phone SCAM DON'T EVER DIAL AREA CODE 809 This one is being
> distributed all over the US. This is pretty scary-especially given the way
> they try to get you to call. Be sure you read this & pass it on to all
> your friends & family so they don't get scammed! MAJOR SCAM: Don't respond
> to Emails, phone calls, or web pages which tell you to call an "809" Phone
> Number. This is a very important issue of Scam Busters because it alerts
> you to a scam that is spreading *extremely* quickly - can easily cost you
> $24100 or more, and is difficult to avoid unless you are aware of it. We'd
> like to thank Paul Bruemmer and Brian Stains for bringing this scam to our
> attention. This scam has also been identified by the National Fraud
> Information Center and is costing victims a lot of money. There are lots
> of different permutations of this scam, but HERE'S HOW IT WORKS: You will
> receive a message on your answering machine or your pager, which asks you
> to call a number beginning with area code 809. The reason you're asked to
> call varies. It can be to receive information about a family member who
> has been ill, to tell you someone has been arrested, died, to let you know
> you have won a wonderful prize, etc. In each case, you are told to call
> the 809 number right away. Since there are so many new area codes these
> days, people unknowingly return these calls. If you call from the US, you
> will apparently be charged $2425 per-minute. Or, you'll get a long
> recorded message. The point is, they will try to keep you on the phone as
> long as possible to increase the charges. Unfortunately, when you get your
> phone bill, you'll often be charged more than $24100.00. WHY IT WORKS: The
> 809 area code is located in the British Virgin Islands (the Bahamas). The
> 809 area code can be used as a "pay-per-call" number, similar to 900
> numbers in the US. Since 809 is not in the US, it is not covered by U.S.
> regulations of 900 numbers, which require that you be notified and warned
> of charges and rates involved when you call a "pay-per-call" number. There
> is also no requirement that the company provide a time period during which
> you may terminate the call without being charged. Further, whereas many
> U.S. phones have 900 number blocking to avoid these kinds of charges, 900
> number blocking will not prevent calls to the 809 area code. We recommend
> that no matter how you get the message, if you are asked to call a number
> with an 809 area code that you don't recognize and/or investigate further
> and just disregard the message. Be wary of email or calls asking you to
> call an 809 area code number. It's important to prevent becoming a victim
> of this scam, since trying to fight the charges afterwards can become a
> real nightmare. That's because you did actually make the call. If you
> complain, both your local phone company and your long distance carrier
> will not want to get involved and will most likely tell you that they are
> simply providing the billing for the foreign company. You'll end up
> dealing with a foreign company that argues they have done nothing wrong.
> Please forward this entire message to your friends, family and colleagues
> to help them become aware of this scam so they don't get ripped off.

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