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Warning - Artist scam to watch out for

I recently was accepted to the Mission Federal Artwalk in San Diego.  A few days ago, I receive a call from someone saying I should call them regarding the Mission Federal Art show.  The voice mail was very hard to understand due to their accent and fuzzy line. 

So I called today and ask for Sarah Jackson.  After talking to a rude guy insisting I know what the voice message was, I get transferred to Sarah.  I'm placed on hold... she comes on... line fuzzy with static.  I commented on the sound and it clears up somewhat.  She starts talking fast and with the accent, very hard to understand what she's saying.  I comment on her to slow down and she comments that she's going to help me on my hotel rate.   That she's authorized by the Mission Federal to help the artists and vendors.  Ok.... Let's see what she can do.  I had already booked my room from Orbitz.  As she asks questions, I answer them.  She wants the name of the hotel, the address, and she comes back with my room rate.  Hmmmmm, wonder how that happened?  She then says my rate is $248 and she can make sure I get the discount rate for vendors, which would be $237.  I'm thinking... $10 isn't a lot to save.   Ok.... she then says that she's going to transfer me to the reservation department.  I get the same rude guy at the beginning when I called.  He starts talking in the same accent and the phone line starts it's static again.  I comment on it.  He states that "the line is engaged".... who says that in America?  I ask again how he knows about the rate and hotel information.  He's authorized by various art shows to help make sure they get the discounts.   He says he sees where Sarah made her recommendations and he'll send me an email.  "You need to go to your computer now and open the email".  

Me - "I'm not near my computer".   (inside voice... I have work to do)

H - You have a smart phone, use that.

Me- I don't have it with me.  (thinking... why so urgent to open an email)

H - In order to get you the discount, we need to do this together.

Me - Alright

H- I'll wait as long as needed.

Me - I got the email. ( which is coming from OPS at(ehsrooms).com via SignNOW.com)

When I opened the email, it was an information form to fill out, I see all the highlighted areas.  All those areas are your personal information... credit card number, expiration number, name, address, etc.  And at the bottom, you sign off on the form.... Giving them all the permission to use your information.

I told him I'm not going to give any information.  His comments try to reassure me that all the information is confidential, nothing goes to "his" computer.  LOL.... maybe not his computer but it's going to be recorded somewhere, on someone's.  :)

I hung up on him and call the Mission Federal Artwalk group.  I told them about the incident.  They confirm it's a scam (someone else told them the same thing)  and they'll be sending out an email to notify the other artists.  They also said that there is an actual company of EHS ROOMS, but probably someone is using it to their own personal gain.

We might be creative but we aren't stupid!  :)

Views: 1226

Comment by Peggy Crago on March 22, 2018 at 12:57pm

Yeh, the indeciperable accent.  Almost want to give them advice - hire someone who speaks English.

Comment by Terri Einer on April 13, 2018 at 9:31am

Yeah, we get these all the time when we plan on attending a conference here at work. I sure would like to know how they get the contact information for the attendees...

Comment by Len Jagoda on April 13, 2018 at 10:26am

Cousin Guido specializes in kneecaps :) would like to have an address so he could "help" Sarah and Mr. Rude Guy and a host of others who have tried to scam me.  Trust everyone but brand your cattle!

Comment by Barry Shandler on April 13, 2018 at 4:51pm

for the past two years I answer no phone unless I know the caller.  I have an answer machine that says leave a message. they rarely do.  In my free time I check out the numbers on the White Pages,  reverse phone lookup app.  Nine times out of ten the report says fraud or scam number.

Comment by Chris Fedderson on April 13, 2018 at 7:26pm

NO show I have EVER participated in for over 30 years now --W/S and Retail-- has EVER contracted out to a third party to arrange hotel contracts!  Let's be clear... not that they have contracted out but didn't tell us; not that they contracted out and DID tell us; but NOT ONE HAS EVER CONTRACTED OUT!!! HANG UP NOW!!!!

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