Received an offer today from an American Company ” Patent and Trademark Organisation LLC ” offering to update a trade mark which is due to expire next year . They charge a mere $1290 for the privilege of re registering the trade mark which if you renew directly through the Intellectual property office would cost you $402.50.
The letter that I received had terms and condition written on the back, I initially thought the back was grey but on closer examination words can just be made out, no doubt despite their visibility they would be binding and I would probably find that they are enforcible only through American courts.
There was no address on the actual letter but the PO Box number which was given was Patent and Trademark Organisation, PO Box 2331 Shortland Street Auckland 1140.
IPONZ has a warning on their web site IP scams and unsolicited emails
I note that the Australian IP office also has it listed on its warning page .
Before paying a fee for any IP-related service, we recommend that you carefully consider what, if any, protection, promotion or other value the service will provide.
If you wish to use a lawyer for filing and maintaining your intellectual property then we can recommend a New Zealand Law firm which can act for you .
Further warnings have been given by the World Intellectual property Organization who provide a list of examples of such unsolicited letters. http://www.wipo.int/pct/en/warning/pct_warning.html
World psychic institute has just published an advertisement in the best buys magazine this is a copy of the world psychic advertisment .
When you look at the ad and think about what it is asking from you it is rally harvesting private information. You need three things to steal some ones identity. Their name, their date of birth and their address. Bingo this little coupon successfully takes all three. Then on top of it takes your place of birth, and your email. -Why not save them the trouble and send them your passwords as well and the bank account log ins. they are after all more than half way there.
I just wonder how many people who guard their privacy have filled in this form and sent it away because they won the prize. ?
I note that one astute person put up a post to say that the World psychic institute couldn’t add, but then this person didn’t really get it either ,this is because that person had probably had their birthday this year.. If you have had your birthday then your birth year and your age will add to 113 if your birthday is yet to come your age plus your year of birth will add to 112.
Those who have filled in the coupon and sent it away will find that their dreams will not come true but vivid and very real nightmares will commence.
Look up World psychic institute and you will find that it does not exist.
Look up P.O.BOX 201057 and it shows that “THE RED BLANKET LIMITED “ company which has been struck off in 2006, used to use this p o Box address. This company folded several years ago and it is more than likely that someone else has picked up the box number and is using it for this scam .
So I really hope that if you are contemplating sending something off that you first do a Google and find this article, it will give you food for thought. Ignore this warning at your own risk.
If you really do want a numerological reading I can recommend Peter Vaughan I know that he exists, I know that your information will not be used for anything else but for the purpose of providing a reading and above all I know where he lives. See also his upcoming meet up .
Every year round about this time there is some one who send out a share offer.
This year it is again STOCK & SHARE TRADING COMPANY PTY LTD
A recent article Time to start finding a few chinks in Mr Armour can be found on stuff and the securities commission gave a warning on this in 2010
and again 3 September this year Warning: Be wary of unsolicited offers from Stock & Share Trading Company Pty Limited
The price being offered is $2 per share when the reality is that he shares are worth $2.71 for ordinary shares.
Economics play a part in what is happening in our lives today and too often we decide on the course of action based on $$$ .
When faced with an unjustified payment of $230 because your car is towed the decision you have to make is how much will it cost me to fight it, if you employ a lawyer the very first hour will see you shy of more than the payment is worth and there is no way that a lawyer will resolve the issue for less than $230. therefore it is uneconomic to dispute it and that is how many fines are enforced.. strictly through scale of economy .. and nothing to do with justification and fairness.
Today there is an article in the herald which gives the story of One man who challenged his fees and one Car-parker takes on towies and wins.
Significantly the man was a lawyer and knew what to do .....far too often it is the fact that people are not sure of their rights and the possibilities which exist for them which limits their ability to fight back.
I have long maintained that if you don't know your rights you don't have any .
Just as economy plays a part in your decision to pay an unjustified sum , the other party will also have to decide if Economy plays a part in the legal challenge that you put up to them.
You do not have to be a lawyer to take on challenges such as this, you simply need to be aware of the availability of the disputes tribunal or what ever relevant tribunal for your matter.
It is time that we all stood up to bullies who enforce their own private little rules , if we make it difficult for them and uneconomic then we will see a shift to actions which are fair and reasonable.
Start by doing a Google search sites such as the neighbourhood support sites have useful information and provide downloads such as this one Download this fact sheet as a PDF (191 kB) Illegal parking and car towing
If you need a hand in protecting your rights , give us a call, we can help you put the evidence together and point you in the right direction for an economical solution .
The police have a web page entitled How to prevent identity crime which gives many useful tips on keeping your identity safe.
The also provide a brochure with suggestions as to how you should go about it.
But the reality is that no matter how careful you are you cannot prevent someone from stealing your identity.
Take for example the following story The stolen identities of dead children were allegedly used by an elderly man to scam taxpayers of $450,000 in a rare type of benefit fraud.” How do you think the dead children or their parents could have prevented someone from stealing their identities? Well you are right they were entirely helpless.
The amazing thing is that while some government departments have realised years ago that Verification was the only thing that stands in the way of fraud, there were others which took a lot longer to cotton on. I am happy to read in that same article that verification is now being carried out but we are only part of the way there.
Let’s look at warrant of finesses as an example.
This is a small piece of paper which is stuck to your windscreen and indicates that for the current period the car is fit to be on the road.
Once upon a time there were only two ways to get this
- You had to get the vehicle tested
- You bought one in a pub.
With the advancement of technology option 2 can be avoided and you can go straight to your colour printer and print one off and stick it onto your windscreen.
So why don’t people do this?
- With the advancement of technology the police also have a data base and before they have even stopped your car they already know if you have a valid WOF or not and the copied warrant will only serve to make your life miserable. Not only will you get a fine for not having a warrant you will be fined for having a false warrant.
- Additionally if you have an accident even if it was not your fault you will not have insurance cover.
Therefore there are two criteria to the decision to use false particulars and or documents.
- The risk of being caught
- The consequences of being caught.
If the risk of being caught is low then there is an incentive to attempt to dupe the other party
If there are no consequences or the cost of the penalty is less than the proceeds of the fraudulent activity then economically speaking, the gamble is worth it.
What can we do to stop identity theft?
While you should never be complacent about your identity you have to accept that protecting your personal details is largely outside your control. Your name date of birth and your address are the three points of reference to identify you and there are many who have access to those details
- . Whenever you ring up organisations to query your bill e.g. Telephone, insurance companies etc. you will be asked security questions.. So what do they ask you.. Your name, address and date of birth
- When you open an account or obtain a loan they get your name ,address and date of birth
- Go to the doctor the hospital, get a speeding ticket – name ,address and date of birth
- Entering a competition. to qualify you need to provide name ,address and date of birth
While the privacy act requires each company to take care with your personal details there are many cracks in the system and are others who are quite reckless with your identity and in so doing your details can fall into any ones hands.
- There is no guarantee of the integrity of the person at the call centre , and with many call centres off shore the ethical standards and levels of enforcement may not be the same as here in NZ
- The storage of records in companies you trade with. It can be as simple as them selling the photo copier which has your stored details on the hard drive which can be recovered in the future by unauthorised third parties.
- The documents which are sent out in the mail, I have received them form the insurance and of late the registrar of elections. The specially marked envelopes makes these documents which contain all your personal details an easy target at any stage between leaving the electoral office and it arriving safely within your home .
It is therefore not the person whose identity is being used who has an issue it is the person who is dealing with the person who has assumed the identity. If everyone verifies who they are dealing with then the cycle of identity theft will be broken.
It is our politeness and our “not wishing to offend” which facilitates identity fraud.
Verifying who you are dealing with is easier than you think, I can come to your business and teach you how to go about it or you can contact us for the next How to verify work shop .
While we are busy stamping out bullying in schools , it is very much alive and regularly practiced in the real world.
The most common type of Bullying I see is where a lawyer makes a demand for something and expects compliance with the demand because he knows that it would be uneconomical for the other party not to comply.
It is a bit like a game of Poker the person with the money can make the demands because the party with the best hand usually being the truth and the integrity , is often in a situation where they cannot afford to pay to protect the truth and has to withdraw because the stress the ridiculous associated court costs are simply not worth it.
This would not happen if Lawyers were held accountable to any claim they made or threatened to make. I see this so often people create any kind of document or allegation and “ sanitize” it through a lawyer.
Because the lawyer is an officer of the court and must not mislead the court , it is assumed that the lawyer has checked out and asserted the truth behind the matter. In reality this does not occur.
So when a lawyers letter arrives people panic and think that they are about to be sued. They comply with the demands just to make the issue go away. If they do not role over the lawyer initiates action , this brings about costs for the other party for many thousands of dollars . In my mind this is bullying.
I have a simple solution I stand up to bullying and by using the law address the issue. Lawyers are not law enforcers , they are simply a weapon employed by bullies as a tool for bullying , effectively they are nothing but a base ball bat used to beat the other party into submission.
of course this is all done in the name of justice and in a manner which prevents the freedom of speech and the ability for us to warn any one about those in our society who are actively seeking to rip others off.
It is therefore my sincere opinion that the officers of the court those who are supposed to be seeking justice are actually facilitating and assisting criminal activities by siding with the bad guys and not checking out their facts before they act.
It has also been my experience that for many lawyers Justice is the last thing on their mind , and far too many are driven by nothing more than the all mighty $$$$.
One of the rules for lawyers and solicitors is that they must not allow their practice to be used for fraud, But when they don’t check the facts and defend their client no matter what they are often the catalyst which facilitates fraud but they are pretty safe as The Police appear to be loathed to take action against lawyers and the Law society protects their own.
When I was a police officer we had to act according to the law, I just wonder why this does not apply to lawyers , instead they misapply and misuse the law to scare people into submission
The truth is that by the very nature of crime the Bad guys have far greater propensity to pay for lawyers than the good guys who are slogging away for a wage and don’t have $500 per week to spare let alone $500 per hour for a lawyer.
This kind of puts an imbalance on things and tips justice and integrity of our society out of kilter. .. and the bad guy benefits from their action.
For that reason I do not give in to bullying and I stand up for my rights because if we don’t stand up for the right to warn others of criminals and their methods of offending then we all lose.
The recommendations on the FIX web site are dubious , many of the recommendations are anonymous and at least one of the recommendations from “ Paul Ashcroft“ is from a name which Mr Mann has been known to use himself.
Jonathon Mann alias Jonathon Macdonald has convictions for Fraud and has assumed a number of careers including Physiotherapy which he has convictions for.
The product IHO Fix is trademarked under pharmaceutical and medicinal preparations but is not listed on the medsafe web site which has to be a worry in itself.
I call people who pass themselves of as something which they are not “Con men” It appears that I am now being put on notice for defamation. Truth Hurts See the full letter and my reply on the transparency web site .
It’s funny how we just love to trust people. In the past few weeks two con persons extraordinaire have come to my notice the first was highlighted in this news item Fraud ‘mule’ in finance role and the second has been publicised through a blog Jonathon Mann con mann
What these people illustrate is that no matter what you are involved in you need to check out who you are dealing with.
Jonathon Mann has been very successful in getting flatmates involved in his business ventures ensuring that they put up all the money and he makes all the profit , there are many who don’t want to talk about it because they feel rather stupid looking back. There re however enough with the courage to speak out these people are saving the necks of many who have not yet had the misfortune of meeting up with the Mann . Jonathan Mann is also known as Jonathon McDonald
Then there is Nicole Margaret Jones, who was employed in her married name as Nicole Collins.
The lesson we have to take forward is that con artist change their names either legitimately or by design, what they don’t change is their habits and future behaviour is often predicted by their actions in the past.
A pre-employment screen by Verisure seeks to verify the information which you have been provided and can identify just who or what you are dealing with.
Can you afford to take the risk? It’s not just the money it’s your reputation and your time that these people steal as well.
Between them these people have conned, Investors, land lords. Flatmates, businesses, employers , educational providers. Each person who interacted with Mann and Collins could have been saved the misery for less than $200.
I recently moved all my telephone services from Telstra Clear, it wasn’t the telephone services which gave me concern but rather that they kept on losing my payments . I then had to spend time talking to someone in the Philippines to attempt to sort the issue out which resulted in wasting much of my time but not in finding the payment .
By the time I shifted to another provider the account still wasn’t sorted out and I simply refused to pay a further cent until they located the missing payments and a comprehensive statement of accounts had been sent to me showing payments and invoices.
Finally they did a reconciliation and I settled the bill .
This week I received a call from someone who claimed to be a debt recovery company.
My reply was simple I told them that I did not have to tell them anything and if they did work for Telstra to check the facts with them.
Four days later I receive a letter from credit consultants debt services -this is where things get really interesting.
Look up www.creditconsultants.co.nz I have tried for 2 days now and I continually get the response “The connection has timed out”
Look up Credit Consultants Debt Services in the companies office and You will find that it was struck off in February this year. Therefore there is no such entity as Credit Consultants Debt Services.
Further the given 0800 number 0800500628 responds with a message asking for you to leave your details – very convenient and all the hall marks of a scam. All the other phone numbers on the letter also have the same message.
Credit consultant’s debt services have absolutely no legal standing they cannot make any demands off you or seek any information from you.
If they phone you hang up if they write to you throw it out.
There is no proof at all that they have any authority to collect money for and on behalf of any one and then there is the slight technicality that they don’t legally exist.
If you have a letter demanding money consult with us and we will advise you if it is fact or fiction and how you should deal with it.
Please note not all demands are scams .. never pay any one except the person to whom you contracted and keep a record of your payment receipts.
I have received communication from a Mr Foster his email and my response are on http://www.transparency.net.nz/
It therefore is some relief that I read that Former iwi social services boss found guilty of fraud. Could this be the start of making those receiving grants accountable ?
I have assisted several charities at the request of the honest members to help sort out the flow of finds into private coffers. The problem they face is that whoever is providing he funds does not take kindly to having a private Investigator involved because in the end they fear that they will be in the firing line for not ensuring accountability. And so the frauds continue
To give an example of what I have seen was
- A lady receiving wages of 60,000 per year and driving a $40,000 vehicle she ran the incorporated society and fired the executive when they came to close to the mark and took on new people who did not have the faintest idea or were in on the deal.
- The at risk kids were the Kapahaka group most of whom weren’t at risk but served as bodies and names for her registers.. but since confidentiality is such an issue this is easily done.
- A society which receives health funding being plundered by lawyers who see the funds in winding the society up as their nest egg. The funding in this organisation has now been stopped but there is no doubt about it that the former executive ran it in a most corrupt manner only to be removed by the court and have the current leadership continue in a similar vein.
It appears that any trust or society which has money Is an easy target of the unscrupulous, those who question the wrong doings are attacked and silenced, they leave in disgust.
A lot more could be done but somehow the government is not big on prevention.
If you are being removed from a trust or society which you have a passion for and can’t believe what is occurring.. give us a call we can give you suggestions.
A client of mine received a lawyers letter the other day , in the letter there were claims that if he did not do what they wanted him to do with in a few days then he would be guilty of a criminal offence which carried a term of imprisonment .
Needless to say my client was more than a bit gobsmacked and was fear stricken . That is exactly what the letter intended but instead of panicking and complying with the false demands, my client phoned me.
What many forget is that Lawyers have no special legal powers, they do however have a great gift of the gab and the ability to spin and contort words. After reading the letter I stamped it with my special stamp ..
So a reply was called for and we penned a short and sweet reply and within 24 hours the whole matter was history .
It is simply amazing what quoting the law to a lawyer can do.
Lawyer’s letters need to be addressed properly and VeriSure we can help eradicate bullshit with facts and provide a reality check for lawyers that you are not a push over.
VeriSure are not lawyers and have no intent in prolonging your agony We want to see people’s rights preserved quickly and efficiently to make the stress go away.
Lawyers letters are generally 98% bluff or 100% accurate when there is a case you need to deal with it when its bull shit the lawyer needs to be reminded of their legal obligations .
If you have received a lawyers letter .. give us a call for a cost effective solution .