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On Sunny Lane: What Do You Know?

Last week I was reading a story in the newspaper about a man who lost $18,000 in a phone scam that involved gift cards.

It made me wonder why he didn't get suspicious. If you have to send somebody money to claim a prize, somehow it just doesn't seem right. Besides, we are constantly getting warnings about phone scams in newspapers and on television.

Well, what do you know? Just a couple of hours after I read that story I got a telephone call. I could hear a woman screaming and crying on the other end. The only words I could understand were "Mom" and "help."

Soon a man came on the line, telling me the woman was my daughter; she had been in an accident and he needed me to calm her down so he could call an ambulance. It all sounded hokey to me. For one thing, why did I need to calm her down so he could call an ambulance? For another thing, I had just texted my daughter two minutes before. I had sent her some jokes and the last thing she texted back was LOL. How could she go from laughing to screaming in two minutes?

I asked the man who he was and what his name was. He hung up.

I called my daughter right away and asked if she and my granddaughter were all right. She said they were okay and working on some crafts. I felt much better.

Later in the afternoon I went to the library to print and email, since I can't print from my laptop. A new security system had been installed since I used it last. I got a security alert on my cellphone. I had to verify I was who I said I was. I had to use a special code to log in. It took me 10 minutes to get through the preliminaries and 10 seconds to print the email.

I should be glad that the computer verifies personal information. I wouldn't want someone like that shyster on the telephone to get hold of it. People should be able to trust people--and computers, too. There have always been people who prey on gullible people--usually people with soft hearts or a desire/need for quick money.

We need to be constantly vigilant. We need to verify a stranger's credentials. We need to know whom we can trust.

I wish I had told that fellow on the phone to get a job. Trouble is, he probably makes more money by swindling people. At least until he gets caught and has to face the consequences.

 

Dorothy is the author of two books—“Miles and Miracles” and “Getting It All Together “. You can purchase a book or send a comment by emailing her at dorothybutzknight@gmail.com


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