Tag Archives: scam

‘Can you break a $500 million note’ scam costs a man from (of course) Florida

Jay MacDonald

This one raises the bar on ridiculousness, even by Florida’s notoriously high standards of silliness.

On Dec. 6, justice finally caught up with one Cleland Ayison, a 32-year-old Tampa man who was charged with trying to pass a bogus $500 million Federal Reserve note to an FBI undercover agent.

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Were you scammed in 2011?

Connie Prater

My friend was conned out of $4,000 from a man she met on an online dating website. Sadly, the Better Business Bureau reports that 2011 was an active year for scam artists.

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Foiled AmEx gift card scam lands man behind bars

Jay MacDonald

Remember that classic opening scene from “The Grifters” where John Cusack tries to con a busy bartender out of $10 by presenting a $20 bill for change and then substituting a $10 in its place?


There’s a grifter here in the Tampa Bay area where I live who figured out a way to pull a similar stunt with a $25 American Express gift card. St. Petersburg Police say he scammed Bay Area bars and restaurants out of more than $20,000 over seven months before they nabbed him.


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Emily’s list: Chase EMV card edition

Emily Crone

I’ve written numerous times about chip-and-PIN credit cards, but mostly about how it’s frustrating that the technology has been adopted in Europe and Asia, but not in the United States. It makes international travel frustrating.

Some U.S. issuers started making chip-and-PIN cards this year, but they were small and exclusive banks such as the United Nations Federal Credit Union. Today, I’m a happy girl because, according to The Washington Post, Chase rolled out a chip-and-PIN card in November!

Keep on reading for more details and my list of my very favorite personal finance blog posts from the past week.

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Beware, weary traveler: Hotels are hotbeds for credit card fraud

Matt Schulz

Next time you travel, remember this: Hotels are always a hotspot for credit card fraud scams.


Since I’ve spent my share of time traveling over the last few months — for everything from a college buddy’s wedding to a family trip to Disney World – stories about credit card scams at hotels have caught my eye recently. Though the scams feature different clever tactics, each has the same intent: getting a hold of a tourist’s credit card info.


And they all drive the point home that, no matter how tired you are from travel, no matter how crabby your toddler’s being that day, no matter how sunburned you get waiting in line at the water park, you need to keep your guard up when you’re traveling.


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