Consumer Complaints and Reviews
I received a call on 2/14/2017 from a lady Mary. She said she was calling from The United States Federal Grant Dep for being a good citizen, pay my taxes on time, never file bankruptcy, no criminal records and it's a free grant the government are giving away. Also gave me a code AR2480 saying that I was entitled to a $9200 grant from the government and she gave me a phone number 606-655-9494 and asked to speak to Davide. I felt it was a scam so I did not call but she called after 30 mins that I needed to call Davide. So I called who explain that he has my grant money and that I needed to go to Walmart or Walgreen close to me for Western Union and I would need to provide a activation fee of $150. Also gave me a control number #9560341626 that after paying the $150 he will tell how to fill the form out so that tax will not be taken from it.
Out of curiosity I went to Publix Western Union and the story changed. He said to activate the card I should get ITUNES card of $150 ($100 or $50s). He said I should call out the number on the ITUNES before he can activate the payment. After he said things have changed, the government is asking for tax fee of $350 which I told he never mentioned this before and I don't have it. He said "you can use your credit card". So I said "ok but I can only pay $200". He said no problem that he will pay the $150. After reading another $200 iTunes card, he pasted my call to another guy Martin ** who is to pay the money through US Bank to my bank that he cannot transfer the money to Western Union anymore. When Martin ** started talking he said the payout is now $10,200 which I asked why, he said I need to pay them another $500 to be able to transfer the money into my bank.
So I asked him if I can pay in the next 2 months. He got kind of mad and said "you have still Friday or go to your bank and do overdraft. They should be able to give you money or go ask your friends for money." That's when I asked him to transfer me back to Davide again. I told Davide I needed to cancel the whole thing and I will return the cards to get my money back. Also I don't need the grant money anymore. Davide told me it was too late that I can't get the cards or money back. Now Davide gave me another reason that error occur while they were trying to process the transfer because I could not pay the $350 so I need to pay another $500 or $350 which will be refunded back to me and I should make payment by this Friday. I can't believe people can be doing this. I wanted to google this but I just got carried away.
I received a call today from 202 741 4477. The gentleman said his name was David. He told me I qualified for a 7000 grant and would never need to pay back. He repeated an address and I told him that wasn't my address and that I was almost debt free and I wasn't interested in the grant. Then he proceed to use foul language at me. Call me a ** for wasting his time. I told him I would report him.
Just like others that have posted here, my scammers called from a NY number probably because they had my zip code. The 1st woman called with the heavy "Indian" accent. Asked me to call back the account counselor at 315-293-2037. Of course, I knew it had to be a scam, but played along. Called Chris ** back later in the afternoon. I got the same nonsense as everyone else, also with the thick "Indian" accent. With this one though, after asking me if I knew how Western Union worked, he said when I got to the store, I had to call him back from the parking lot, let him know where I was and he would "alert" the store that I was on my way to claim my $9000 grant.
As I was on the phone, I'm seeing everyone here tell a similar story. So I started asking him about fees. He claimed there wasn't one. I then asked by was I reading all the same accounts on Consumer Affairs? Why would I need to call them, if I had a confirmation number. Got him all twisted up. He started speaking to someone in the background, then got back to me claiming he didn't know what Consumer Affairs was. Trying to defend himself by saying, he didn't ask me for any personal information. I told him that "if this was not a scam, then there would not be 6+ pages of other people that received the same phone call, with the same speech you just gave me." He apologized for "upsetting me"... which wasn't even the case and told me to have a good day.
I was also contacted today by an Indian guy trying to explain to me how I am one of over 1700 American citizens that works hard, pays my bills on time and not a criminal so lucky me wins a free $7000. All I had to do is go to the nearest Walgreens or Walmart to pick up the funds. I asked why am I getting money from the government because of that and he explained that I am one of the few that was chosen. He gave me a code of ** and told me to call 347-509-8737 as soon as we hung up to further explain how to get this free money.
I called and spoke with another Indian guy telling me to go to Walmart and when I get there to call back and he would explain how to receive the funds. I told him I'd be there in 30 minutes but never went. They called back but I didn't answer. How the hell are they calling all us random people trying to take our hard earned money and nobody is sending any red flags on social media to protect the citizens of this country? Hey souls post this on all social media as well as the news and catch these bastards!
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Just received a call stating I would receive $7800 Loyalty Grant. Knew it wasn't right. I gave them my bank info but when they asked for $250 FLAGGG Alert. Told them I would call back later. I know this is a scam and they said it was not. That's why I googled it and found out there are others receiving the same calls. Pray they don't charge my card or take my money. I have been scammed before.
So I got a cold call from **. ** had a very thick Indian accent and claimed that he worked for the US Treasury Dept and that I was one of 1500 people in my area selected to receive a personal grant for being a good citizen with no criminal record and paying my bills on time. This immediately made me skeptical and I suspected fraud, however I played along with him to try and get additional information so I could include it when I filed a complaint with the authorities. That's when it started getting scary. He began telling me my personal information including what bank I use and what types of accounts I have with them, my home address, my phone number and my email address as well as marital status and that I have 4 children. He stated that I needed to call ** and give him an activation code to claim my grant and then go to my local Walmart Moneygram center to receive my funds.
When I questioned the validity of the grant, ** gave me his employee id of ** and said his work address is 200 Independence Ave, Washington D.C. 20201. He then informed me that the phone call was taking too long and he needed to call a total of 400 people today and that I was not the only good citizen who he had to call today and wished me a good day. I immediately filed a complaint on the TIGTA website as I had been researching the phone numbers, names and address he gave me during the call and came across this thread. I also contacted my banking institution to verify my account security. My concern is that my identity as well as my family's identity may be in jeopardy now, I guess I will have to monitor credit reports more closely than I already do.
I received a call from The United States Federal Grant Dept. saying that I was entitled to a $9000 grant from the government and that I would need to provide a processing fee of $250 to them which I promptly did [like a fool---I am a trusting and optimistic person, and my good nature was exploited]. They then strung me along some more, and gave me another number to call the "bank manager" and she told me that I'd need to send along another $1000 to cover a "state tax" required in order to complete the transaction. That's when the flags and bells penetrated my thick skull and I said a few choice words ending with, scam artist and hung up. This "person's" name is Matthew ** their fake name is "United States Federal Grant Dept." and their number is 315-710-0498.
My experience was exactly the same as what has been reported in the other complaints I've read prior to writing this one and I echo their sentiments. I am a hard working and trusting American---and these crooks stole my money. The worst part for me was not losing the $250 but the feeling of being robbed made me feel violated---like my house was broken into. I've learned my lesson. I can still be trusting but as Ronald Reagan said when dealing with the USSR [at the time] "Trust but verify."
I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one out there going through this. The last two weeks, I have been called twice by a Washington, DC phone number telling me I'm eligible for grant money. The first call, said, because I'm not a criminal and always paid my bills on time, I'm eligible for $9,000.00. All that 's required is I call a second phone number and give them a code. I called and left a message but never heard back.
Next, I received a call a week later (today) stating I qualify for $7,000.00 because I'm a good citizen as long as I don't use the money on drugs, gambling or anything illegal. I could even buy a new car or start a business. I got the code from the first foreigner and called the second foreigner Lisa, **. She went on and on about how she wanted to help me get this money. She said all you have to do is go to Walgreens and buy $250.00 in ITUNES vouchers. Two $100.00 vouchers and one for $50.00.
After that, she said, go to Wal-Mart bring an ID pen and paper, cell phone and she would be on the phone with me the whole time recording the conversation. The goal was to get a MTC number. I did some research online about grant money scams and reached out to my local news channel who investigates scammers and bad deals. I went to Walgreens just out of curiosity to see if vouchers really exist. The store clerk said all we have is ITUNES cards. It's a scam, don't do it.
Like everyone (it seems), I keep getting calls from people from India offering me a $9,000.00 Treasury Dept Government Grant. They are relentless. My latest calls came out of Seattle, **, but it seems they utilize many numbers and locations. My story mirrors all the rest with the proposal and means. I was also told to call the Treasury Department in NYC at 33 Liberty ST 10045. According to their website, this is a scam in their name and they have links to report internet fraud http://www.ic3.gov/default. aspx and other links for reporting. If you have come this far then file complaints as many as you can. I hate to think of all the good trusting people who are cheated. Too bad the news or gov't does not put out warnings regularly to protect us. They tell us about everything else why not a scam of this proportion? IT is up to us, report, report, report!
I received a phone call several times today from the #718-554-7122. I finally got frustrated enough to answer it. The man had a very thick accent from India. I asked him to repeat why I was given a grant for $7600. I never could understand him. I finally took down the grant # and the phone #. I figured it was a scam but I called the # hoping to get someone that spoke English. The # I was given was 206-472-6034. I did get an English speaking woman but I still couldn't understand her as she explained why I was getting this grant. I told them I wanted a check mailed to me. She then told me I would have to pay $250 fee but that it would be refunded to me in five minutes. I told her I didn't have $250. She told me to call her back when I did. That was my clue to check online for scams. I will say, at no point did they ask me for SSN or credit card info. However, I am sure if I would have paid the $250, they would have gotten that information.
Received multiple calls from Man with Thick Indian accent. I explained I was driving and could not talk. He told me that I had qualified for Grant Money Free from the US Treasury! I decided to play along since the calls continued the next morning. The same man gave me a code GD23147 and advised me to call 469-300-0306 to speak to someone else. When I called I advise the man I was very suspicious of the numerous calls from the previous man. I explained that I was considering reporting this information to the FBI. He asked me why I would do this? I said I believed him to be a scammer. I told him I would not give him any information about myself. He said, "So you believe this is a scam." I replied "YES", and he disconnected.
Received a call from someone named Roger ** stating he was calling from the Grant Department of the US Department of Treasury. Really? I called it back and it's a Google Voice number. Beware! Asking for my bank account information and I will get $7500 in Grant Money. This is a scam! I asked if they could mail this to me but later told it was not an option. Do not fall for this.
I had another call today from a man with a heavy Indian accent, telling me that I had been selected for $14600 of free grant money. My response to all of his questions was, "umm hmm". Finally, I asked him if this was a scam? Because people do not just call you out of the blue and give you FREE money. He explained that since I paid my bills on time, no criminal record, and had not filed bankruptcy within the last 8 months, I qualified for this FREE money. Now, we all know if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is not true. So I remained calm, and asked him what was the name of the company he was calling from. (Because of his accent it was hard to hear). After three attempts he said, National Institute of Health. I asked where he was calling from and he said, Seattle, WA. I could hear all the noise in the background so I asked him again if this was a scam. He replied, no!
Just wanted to give me another number to call so I could get my FREE money. I explained to him that I was very leery of this offer, because there are so many people calling trying to scam others. He assured me that this was not a scam. As I begin to question him again about why would someone just call a person and offer them money, just made me believe this was not quite right. He hung up on me. Just be aware of a wolf in sheep clothing.
I got a call from Department of Government Grants saying that I am eligible for a grant from the government. They asked me if I am interested in getting the grant and I said no. He was asking on the call, what should I do with the application and then suggested me if I would like to cancel the application. I said yes. He said he would be charging fees of about $3.97 for the cancellation and then wanted to know my card details such as card number, cvv number and expiry details. I told him that I will not be giving those details over the phone and asked him to mail me my charges and told him that I would be only paying them once I get the acknowledgment. He also told me that if I will not be paying the fees I would be paying a penalty of 59.95$ every month for a period of one year. I said "I don't believe you guys" as his accent doesn't sound like American and sounds Asian.
When I asked him about his details in order to verify the authenticity of his details, he left me with these details. Name: **, Employee id: **, Phone number: 202-698-9999 but he call from 202-698-9997 and told this is his personal number. Address: 200 Independence Avenue, Southwest, Washington DC 20201. Later he hung up the call. When I tried calling him back on both of his numbers say that number is not in service. When I googled about these I found that these people are fraud and wanted to share my experience. Please don't fall for these people. Never reveal your details!!
Like Beverly, more than likely does, I have a 504 area code. However, I reside in San Antonio, TX. I received those same calls but I looked online and saw it was a scam. So, for ** and giggles I blocked my number and called the "account manager". First, a guy with a thick Indian accent asked me who I was and why was I calling. I never answered the "who I was" but said, "I was told to call you." He asked, "for what?" I said, "in regards to the free grant money." He said, okay and asked me for the alpha-numeric code I was given. I purposely gave him XTX0245, which was the wrong code. He replied to confirm XVS0246, which was the correct code that was given to me by the first caller (I received a call about 5 min. prior and was given a completely different code). So, still trying to figure out how he knew that it was me although I blocked my number.
I still played along just to see where the conversation would go. I told me that in order to receive my "free" grant money I needed to go to the nearest CVS or Walgreen's and to call him when I got in the parking lot. So, I acted as if I didn't understand the instructions and asked him the reason for going to Walgreen's or CVS. His reply was, "to get the registration card so you can get your $9000." I asked, "what registration card?" He used the same rebuttal, "the registration card so you can get your $9000."
So I changed the question. I asked the, "what does the registration card from Walgreen's or CVS look like?" He then asked me if I was familiar with an iTunes card. I said yes, but why does the government need me to get an iTunes card in order to receive my "free money?" He said because money can't be transferred from that card and to keep that card with me and once I called registered with that card I would receive my now $9200 within 15 minutes. I then asked if he worked for the government? He replied, yes.
I then asked him for his government ID #. He responded by asking me for the last for digits of my SSN. I told him I don't give out my SSN. He then replied, "why don't you want to give me your SSN? Are you an illegal immigrant or something?" I said, "no, it's just that I receive grants from the government all the time for going to school..." He cut me off and said, and you have to pay those back, but I'm the one giving you a free grant. I politely tried to correct him and tell him that only loans get paid back, not grants. He began to get frustrated and called me a liar. I told him, "if you work for the "grant department" you should know that."
Before he could reply I asked him where he was calling from. He replied NY, which I had already did a reverse look-up of the number and saw that the number was from Syracuse. I asked where in New York? He replied, New York City. I told him that I had already looked the number up and saw he was calling from an untraceable internet number. He said, "yes, and where are you, in a cardboard box?" I actually thought that was pretty funny, so I laughed.
That seemed to make him mad though as most Indians do when you laugh at them. He then told me that I was no longer eligible for the "free" grant money and to go get the $9000 from somewhere else. Then he hung up on me. I did all of that just to see how far these folks will go. I'm a sales professional and know that there's a lot of gullible people out there that would truly give their last $200 because they're convinced that they will receive that $9000 dollars in 15 minutes. I wouldn't want anything like that to happen to any of my loved ones nor would I want the same to happen to anyone else's.
So me and my husband just got a call from a "restricted" number. The foreign lady said we won a government grant of $9,500 for paying our taxes and no criminal record. We do not have to pay it back. So when she finished she gave us the other number to call to claim our grant. The number was 202-888-4097 and the reference number was **. This lady was very rude and asked where we wanted the money sent, I said a check. She didn't ask for my address or anything. She said "ok I send a check" and hung up on me. So I called back and asked her how could she without knowing an address, she hung up again. Long story short, I called back and let them know I knew it was scam and they need to stop trying to steal hard working Americans' money. That really ticked her off and she went ballistic. She keeps calling back to back now to argue. So I told them I was turning them in and she got even more furious.
Got a call from 1-132-454-4535 this morning. The woman with poor English knew my name and since I don't make much money, informed me I qualify for a $3500 one time only government grant. The phone number comes from China and sure enough they wanted my SS number in order to receive the grant...told her "the US government doesn't give money away only takes it" and hung up.
In the past few days I have gotten several calls tell me I qualified for a $9000 grant from the US government. I have gotten this call months ago & asked them to remove me from their list & hung up. Came from Washington DC number (202) 444-4444 & (202) 681-3787. Today I got call after call until I tried to call the number back & talked to a man with a thick Indian accent - same story - this time write down a Financial Dept Phone Number (914) 355-9728 & a confirmation #US 330. He knew my name, address, email, and clearly phone number.
I called the NY number & had another man in a thick accent mocking me & asking me if I murdered someone and was calling to confess. I hung up - they called me back and gave me the name "John **". Again - very odd attempt at conversation and man said I was calling his cell phone several times. Going to block all numbers that called & are involved - but most disturbing is the amount of info he already had on me - all my basic personal info. Why is no one official looking into this? Names they dropped: US Treasury Dept. Grants from the Administration of Human Health and Services. Annoying as ** & also lame to try to get people's hopes up & how did they get our info?
I received (2) phone calls yesterday from unknown phones and (1) today from a Moroccan number +212 8 85 64 75 8. All callers used American names with a very heavy foreign accent, each told me I had been awarded a grant, each time I asked them to send me something via mail or take me off the call list. The lady today said they can't send me anything via mail and that they would continue to call. The next time I will talk to them further to see what information they ask for and will take the situation from there. I am smart enough to know obviously a scam similar to IRS scam. They would not call. They would send information via mail. Will update once I get another call.
This is the third time I have received a call from Federal Grants. The woman on the phone, told me 1500 people were selected to receive 8500. The criteria for selection is that an individual has no criminal record or bankruptcy. She gave me a personal confirmation number and the phone number that a personal accountant would be waiting. I was told I needed to do this immediately. She also asked in what form of payment and listed the choices as cash in hand, direct deposit or visa debit card. Something seemed off about this. I researched Federal Grants and was led to this site.
I received 2 call from Washington DC area (202) 409-9177. The second was an Indian accent man who began explaining that I had been selected for a grant (around $7500 or so, not important) out of a select group of citizens. Ha ha,"nonsense I thought to myself." Before he could continue his "pitch", I asked him, "if you are affiliated with the US government, can you tell me who our current Secretary of State is?" He stammered and asked, "can you hear me?" I said yes, and repeated my question. He replied, "can you tell me who it is?" I laughed, and replied loudly, "Scam!" Then, I hung up and looked up this online, which is where I am now. Beware folks, and get the message out.
So I got a call today from miss Annabelle ** from the "treasury department"??? She was a lovely lady with a thick Asian accent who informed me that my great government randomly selected lil ol me to receive 7000 of them free $Frogskins$. They print over yonder next to her office! Dang boy I was hooting & a hollering. I was so dang happy! Had a dodo eating grin on my face that's for damn sure??? She didn't ask for my bank info or nothing! Just gave me a top secret code that I was warned not to tell a soul or somebody might scam me, impersonate me & claim all the loot! So I thanked her for the warning & promised I wouldn't.
After that she informed me "in a sincere tone" that I would need to go ahead & take $225 with me though to pay for activation fees & things like that. You know how it is... There's always some kinda hidden fees??? But that's the world we live in I reckon... so I whipped out my beat up billfold my grampa gave me when I was 10 & started counting... 1,2,3,4... Dangit! But he always taught me to have a secret stash so the women folk wouldn't know exactly how much I was worth so I dug deep in that thing. I found 3 folded up 100 dollar bills from 1988 in a side pocket??? Then told me to call another number to get the ball rolling... so I said "well bless your heart" & thanked her kindly & told her that if I could I'd kiss her momma for raising such a wonderful, sweet person??? She welcomed me & said by the sound of my voice her momma would love that but her daddy might not & we had a good laugh & said our goodbyes???
Then I called the number she had me write down immediately & a dude picked up already laughing hysterically & I gave that ol boy my secret password like she told me to... This boy had 1 job to do & ruined the whole dang scam! LMFAO! Started repeating his self a lot & stuttering real good!! LOL... All poor sweet miss ** good con work just went right down the toilet... Hahaha! If only she had a better wingman... Dang-on shame??? I'm just kidding man. They coulda never got me on that hustle boy!!! My momma didn't raise no dummy??? LMAO!! Be careful out here folks. It's a short life & a dangerous time & world we all live in where them frogskins rule it all & people will sell their youngins & kill to get em??? Stay safe & be happy y'all???
I have gotten no fewer than 50 calls in the last 4 days from an unknown # claiming to be from the US Government Grant Department in Washington DC. I answered once. Told them to take my name off the list because I don't need any grant. The next few times I ignored it. Now they are calling NONSTOP every hour, sometimes twice an hour. Always a foreign man or woman. I am wit's end. I need help and have no idea what to do. I can't block it since it's coming up unknown. I even called my phone carrier and they can't do anything about it. I'm pretty fed up. Freaking out.
I received a call today from an unknown number informing me that the United States Gov had selected a few thousand citizens to receive a loyalty grant of $8500. He said that the selections were based on no criminal history (I have a DUI), on-time bill and tax payments, and for being a loyal citizen. He congratulated me for being selected and proceeded to verify my personal information.
Although I had an inkling that this was a scam, I heard him out just in case as he did not request payment or my bank information. The three wire payment options were to have the wire transfer funds go directly to my bank account, prepaid debit card, or to a Western Union. Obviously, I chose WU. He then gave me a phone # (315-203-3446) to call to verify and receive the funds.
He warned me that the line may be busy from all the other offers (scams) given to citizens, and to try repeatedly until I was connected. Needless to say, I will not be calling as I already know I will be asked to pay x amount to receive the funds by wire. Be sure to Google everything to protect yourself. There's no such thing as free money.
Today 10/24/16 I received a call from a unknown number wanting to give me money for a grant. I proceeded with the conversation thinking an extra $9000 would be great but I'm not falling for it because that doesn't just happen. After the woman on the phone told me her phone number 202-670-4534 and a Western Union confirmation number, I decided to look up the number before calling it back simply because it didn't feel right. Lo and behold it brought me to this website. Made me feel better to know I checked it out before doing something dumb.
Contacted by DC number today +1 (202) 548-4777 and informed I was selected to be granted $9000 from the government as an incentive to stimulate the economy. An Indian individual gave me a 5-digit confirmation number and told me I could select ways of receiving my money, one which was through Walmart or Western Union, another direct deposit to my account of which he would need my account info. He then asked me my age, marital status and if I was employed. Then told me to contact his accounts manager at (646) 504-4830 if I wanted information about received at Western Union or Walmart as I did not feel comfortable about giving personal information out over the phone.
I called and was sent to an answering machine and another Indian woman called me back from the same number. I inquired but said I did not feel comfortable and she hung up before explaining further. I am a veteran and thought this may have been legit after reading the recovery act description on the website but the way of retrieving made no sense especially since as the federal government I should have been mailed the check not contacted via a phone service. I have been scanned before and this feels very similar so please be aware, and never give account information over the phone.
I would like to inform people that I too got a phone call in September; from someone claiming that I qualified for free grant money from the government. I could barely understand the woman that contacted me. I had to ask her to repeat herself because her accent was very hard to understand. I went ahead and listened to her anyway though it did not sound right. I have never heard of the government giving free money for a grant. She told me that I qualified for $7000.00. She kept asking me for information about myself and then she wanted my bank account information. I did not give that to her, because it sounded too good to be true. She also wanted to be paid $200.00. It did not sound right so I told her that I had to go. I had my husband call her back, and when he went to question her, she became defensive. He hung the phone up and he told me it was a scam.
So I answered the phone number coming from Indiana (765) 554-4666 saying that he was from the federal government and that I was picked to receive 9,888 in federal grant money that I would never have to pay back. Also saying that he worked in Washington and his name was James ** (he was foreign, maybe from India). I asked for a number so I could call him back and he gave (202) 888-5094 number. And he kept telling me that it wasn't a scam (very adamant) about it I must say. I have had them be really ugly to me before and was waiting on that to happen - He was very calm under pressure and the only time he lost it was when I questioned over and over - he was like "Oh My God." Which was funny to hear him say.
But really do people fall for these scams - it is really hard to convince them that they are scammers, but I like to tease them and will even throw in the conversation that they are scammers, and they carry on for a minute and then get right back to convincing me, us that they are for real. So honestly I can say that sometimes they are convincing and I wish someone would/could give money for nothing... Just remember that it is a scam and never fall for it.
I was called every hour, sometimes 2 times an hour all day by the same number. I even told them not to call 2 times and just quit answering after that and they called up to 4:59pm CST. The number they used was 204-556-7459. They told me I was eligible for $13500.00 grant because I have filed taxes on time and not filed bankruptcy. I just have completed a previous chapter 11 bankruptcy so I don't know where they get their information but I wasn't interested and told them that but they continued calling.