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USGNN Original StoryScams Continue to Plague Industry

Glass shops across the United States continue to be the subject of scams, with the latest coming from a Rev. Richmond Cyril, who contacts shops both by Internet phone and fax.

In the latest scam, Rev. Richmond Cyril contacts shops to try to order a "30-by-30 glass … with ¼ thickness and a quantity of 100." He adds, "Kindly go ahead and get me the quote and also advice [sic] me on the forms of payment that you accept."

A reverse look-up on the number from which the fax was sent shows that it is a landline based in New York City. A call to the number indicates that it is a fax machine, but notations on the fax indicate that it was sent via an Internet fax service, www.callwave.com.

A Google™ search of Rev. Richmond Cyril shows a person using this name visited a pet shop site in July 2007 with a similar request-looking for prices on fish tanks and the types of payment accepted. (CLICK HERE to view (scroll down).)

A story from Nashville's WKRN.com alleges that a gentleman bearing the same name participated in a scam in which he said he was building an orphanage in Ghana and needed money. (CLICK HERE for related story.)

The customer service representative at the shop who submitted this information to USGNN.com™/USGlass magazine also received a call and advised the shop was not interested in this type of work. The shop called the number provided back, though, and discovered it was a fax number as well.

This scam appears to be very similar to others that have plagued the industry in the past. Many of the prior scams have followed a particular formula: Glass shops are contacted by a prospective customer who requests that unusual quantities of glass and/or windshields be shipped to a location at some distance, often to a foreign country such as Ghana (CLICK HERE for related story).

The customer also requests that a specific freight company be used to ship the order. The scammer then directs the glass company to obtain a credit card payment from the customer and to exchange the credit card payment for cash. The shipping company then directs the shop to transfer the cash via Western Union money transfer to a shipping company in Ghana. The shipping company provides wiring instructions. Upon receipt, the shipping company promises to provide the glass shop with receipt and pick-up information, but the glass company never gets reimbursed.

For shops that utilize copy machines, another popular scam involves a person calling businesses to check on their copy machines. On first contact, the caller may say something like, "I'm calling to check on your Xerox 370 machine," and waits for the recipient of the call to correct them with the type of copier they have. Two weeks later, the office receives a call back from the shop, this time saying. "We're calling because we have a sale on toner for your copier, the [insert correct name of copier here]. Would you like us to send you some out?" The recipient of the call often assumes this is from the company's regular toner supplier, accepts and when the toner arrives, an astronomical cost is applied to the toner.

CLICK HERE to discuss this and other scams.

CLICK HERE to e-mail USGNN.com™ to advise if you'd been the target of either of these scams or another recent scam.

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